Toei Launches IPTV Channel in US

'Kamen Rider' ('Masked Rider') from Toei

Japanese major promotes toons, movies and merchandise

HONG KONG – Toei Co., the second biggest Japanese movie conglomerate, has debuted a paid-for Internet channel targeted at U.S. viewers.

The ToeiJapan Channel will carry a mix of the company’s animation series, including the popular “Kamen Rider” show, current movies and library titles.

The channel will be offered at $20 month, and the Asahi Shimbun newspaper reports that rented equipment costing a further $9.99 monthly will also be needed.

In its first year ToeiJapan will be in Japanese only without sub-titles, limiting the channel to Japanese speakers and the Japanese diaspora communities in the U.S.

Toei says the launch is part of the ‘Cool Japan’ movement to promote Japanese culture abroad along the lines of the ‘Korean Wave.’ It also hopes to sell more shows, film rights and character merchandise.

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