Naruto Press Releases - Naruto for the Xbox 360

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Two version of this article have been released. One by Ubisoft, and another which has been shown on various un-official anime websites. They are both very similar, but there are differences, and for that reason we have provided both versions of the article. Ubisoft's version is shown first.

Ubisoft and Viz Media Sign Licensing Agreement for Hit Property Shonen Jump’s Naruto™ -- 4/6/2006

Ubisoft signs licensing agreement with VIZ Media, LLC, to develop video games based on SHONEN JUMP’s NARUTO™

Today Ubisoft announced that it has signed a licensing agreement with VIZ Media, LLC, to develop video games based on VIZ Media’s hugely popular SHONEN JUMP’s NARUTO™ animation series for the Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft. The game will hit stores in North America, South America, Central America and Mexico in 2007.

With NARUTO, Ubisoft will develop for the first time a game based on a Japanese property. NARUTO was first launched as part of SHUEISHA’s weekly manga magazine, Weekly Shonen Jump in 1999 and launched in the U.S. in the monthly SHONEN JUMP Magazine in 2003. Naruto manga books have sold more than 59 million copies in Japan alone. Manga books are published in major territories in Europe as well. The NARUTO anime series debuted on TV TOKYO in 2002 and has already spawned several successful video game titles in Japan as well as character merchandise and two movies. Now, NARUTO anime is airing with tremendous success on Cartoon Network in the U.S.

NARUTO takes place in a world where ninja are the ultimate power. Infused with the spirit of a once fearsome Nine-Tailed Fox demon, Uzumaki Naruto is a ninja-in-training who is learning the art of ninjutsu with his classmates Sakura and Sasuke. The trio studies under the instruction of their teacher, Kakashi, who helps the group face a series of dangerous and daunting tests and challenges. Through their adventures, the young ninjas learn the importance of friendship, teamwork, loyalty, hard work, creativity, ingenuity and right versus wrong.

“NARUTO’s ninja and martial arts themes are a perfect match for video games, allowing fans to immerse themselves in the characters and become part of the action” said Cynthia Money, vice president of consumer products for VIZ Media. “As a leading global game developer, Ubisoft is an ideal partner to develop video games for NARUTO that will bring out the power and emotion of the storylines.”

“NARUTO is a huge hit around the world, and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to develop a game that will bring this exciting character to life,” said Christian Salomon, worldwide licensing director at Ubisoft. “NARUTO is part of a wave of Japanese manga and anime that appeals to kids and adolescents alike, and we plan to deliver to them every bit of the excitement they have experienced in NARUTO’s manga, movies and TV shows.”

About VIZ Media, LLC:
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan’s largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan Production Co., Ltd. (ShoPro Japan), VIZ Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America and a global licensor of Japanese animation. The company offers an integrated product line including, magazines such as SHONEN JUMP and SHOJO BEAT, graphic novels, videos, DVDs, audio soundtracks and develops and markets animated entertainment from initial production, television placement and distribution, to merchandise licensing and promotions for audiences and consumers of all ages. Contact VIZ Media at 295 Bay Street, San Francisco, CA 94133; Phone (415) 546-7073; Fax (415) 546-7086; and at www.VIZ.com.

About Ubisoft:
Ubisoft is a leading producer, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment products worldwide and has grown considerably through its strong and diversified lineup of products and partnerships. Ubisoft has offices in 21 countries and sales in more than 50 countries around the globe. It is committed to delivering high-quality, cutting-edge video game titles to consumers. Ubisoft generated revenue of 538 million Euros for the 2004–2005 fiscal year, an increase of 8 percent over the previous fiscal year at constant exchange rates. To learn more, please visit www.ubisoftgroup.com.

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Ubisoft announces Naruto for Xbox 360

Paris, FRANCE – April 6, 2006 – Today Ubisoft, one of the world’s largest video game publishers, announced that it has signed a strategic non exclusive licensing agreement with TV TOKYO Corporation and SHUEISHA Inc., to develop games based on the hugely popular Naruto anime series for the Microsoft Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft. The new titles will be available in North and South America and European territories in 2007.

With Naruto, Ubisoft will develop for the first time a game based on a Japanese property. Naruto was first launched as part of SHUEISHA’s weekly manga magazine in 1999 and Naruto manga books have sold more than 50,000,000 copies in Japan alone. Manga books are published in the US and major territories of Europe as well. Naruto anime series debuted on TV TOKYO in 2002 and has already spawned several successful video game titles in Japan as well as multiple character merchandise and two movies. Now, Naruto anime is aired with tremendous success on Cartoon Network in the US

NARUTO takes place in a world where ninja are the ultimate power. Uzumaki NARUTO is a ninja-in-training who is learning the art of ninjutsu with his classmates Sakura and Sasuke. The trio studies under the instruction of their teacher, Kakashi, who helps the group face a series of dangerous and daunting tests and challenges. Through their adventures, the young ninjas learn the importance of friendship, teamwork, loyalty, hard work, creativity, ingenuity, and right versus wrong.

“Naruto will broaden our portfolio and contribute to achieving our strategic goal of earning 25% of our turnover through licences,” said Christian Salomon, Director of Worldwide Licensing at Ubisoft. “Naruto is part of a wave of Japanese manga and anime that appeals to kids and adolescents alike, and we plan to deliver them every bit of the excitement they have experienced in Naruto’s books, movies and TV shows.”

“I’m confident Ubisoft will manage to create an exciting Naruto game, while respecting the anime’s spirit of passing on positive values and a lot of fun” said Hayato Date, Naruto anime series director.


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