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Love pops for comicbook

Singer/thesp to work with Yazawa, Milky on 'Ai'

Courtney Love will collaborate with publisher Tokyopop on a fantasy comicbook series influenced by the volcanic singer-actress’ love of Japanese manga.

Love will work with Japanese comic artist Ai Yazawa (“Paradise Kiss”) and D.J. Milky (“Karma Klub”) to create “Princess Ai,” set for release next year. Tokyopop CEO and chief creative officer Stuart Levy said the project won’t stop with manga, the name for Japanese comicbooks but will extend to animation projects, merchandise and other outlets for the property.

Storyline follows a talented but troubled performer who is dodging assailants tracking her from her previous life as a princess in a mysterious land. “Princess Ai is a great character because she feels like my alter ego, but in a fantasy setting,” said Love, whose next album debuts in October on Virgin Records.

As part of the tour and musicvideos planned in support of the album, Love wants to use Princess Ai imagery; Yazawa and Milky are incorporating lyrics from the new album into the comic’s storyline and dialogue.

Los Angeles-based Tokyopop is a major publisher of manga in the U.S., licensing hundreds of the properties and translating them for English-language markets.

Several properties –including “Cowboy Bebop,” “Initial D,” “Battle Royale,” “GTO” and “Rave Master” — have caught on in the U.S. Tokyopop also has a product line called “Cine-manga,” graphic novels based on U.S. TV properties such as “Lizzie McGuire,” “SpongeBob SquarePants” and “Spy Kids 2.”

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