RTL grows anime arm

Universum draws plan to keep 'Moving' on

BERLIN — RTL Group’s Munich-based distrib Universum has set up an anime division to handle its growing home entertainment catalog of animated product, including Hayao Miyazaki’s “Howl’s Moving Castle” and Shinji Aramaki’s sci-fi tale “Appleseed.”

Universum will release “Howl’s Moving Castle” in theaters Aug. 25, with a DVD release slated for February. Local distrib Rapid Eye Movies is releasing “Appleseed” in cinemas Sept. 8.

Universum also handles titles such as “Ghost in the Shell II” and “Millennium Actress” as well as high-profile pics from the Studio Ghibli catalog, which it obtained last year, including Miyazaki’s “Spirited Away” and “Princess Mononoke.” Other Ghibli titles include “The Cat Returns,” “Kiki’s Delivery Service,” “My Neighbor Totoro,” “Laputa Castle in the Sky” and “Porco Rosso.”

Universum is bundling all of its anime titles under the new label, with the first releases due out this fall.

Company operates a number of other specialty labels such as ufa Home Entertainment, ufa Art, ufa Klassiker and ufa Kids.

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