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Press Release: VIZ MEDIA WANTS POKÉMON FANS TO "CATCH 'EM ALL" WITH A RIDE ON AMTRAK

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VIZ MEDIA WANTS POKÉMON FANS TO “CATCH ‘EM ALL” WITH A RIDE ON AMTRAK

San Francisco, CA, September 8, 2006 – VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), one of the entertainment industry’s most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, Amtrak and Pokémon USA, present the “Gotta Catch a Ride to New York!” Sweepstakes! The sweepstakes will be open through October 13, 2007.

One lucky winner will win a five-day/four night trip to New York City with three family members via Amtrak to Pokémon USA, Inc. headquarters to celebrate the special release of Pokémon: Lucario and the Mystery of Mew! The winner will also walk away with a $600 American Express gift card.

To encourage kids and parents to ride the rails with Amtrak, a Pokémon-wrapped train will run from Boston to Washington, D.C. through the month of September, and 20,000 kids packs will be distributed in select stations, and through Amtrak’s online store. The Kids Packs contain Pokémon Fan Magazine, a VIZ Media All Ages manga sampler, a Pokémon: Lucario and the Mystery of Mew movie poster, and information on the sweepstakes, PokemonCenter.com, and Amtrak’s Kids Half Off Fare!

“We are excited to work with Amtrak and Pokémon USA on such a great program,” says Wendy Shimamura, project lead, VIZ Media. “Train travel is an integral part of Japanese culture and community, so it’s just natural to bring the joy of manga and Pokémon to children and families aboard one of the most prominent transportation services in the United States through 20,000 free Kids Packs! And with the cost of gas rising, it’s great to encourage families to travel via alternative methods of transportation.”

“We can’t wait to welcome the winner of “Gotta Catch a Ride to New York” to Pokémon headquarters, says Holly Rawlinson, Vice President of Licensing, Pokémon USA.” “For a Pokémon fan, it’ll be a thrill to meet the people who make the brand what it is.”

VIZ Media will be releasing Pokémon: Lucario and the Mystery of Mew on DVD on September 19.

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 manga and 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.

About Amtrak
Amtrak provides intercity passenger rail service to more than 500 destinations in 46 states on a 22,000-mile route system. For schedules, fares and information, passengers may call 800-USA-RAIL or visit www.amtrak.com.

About Pokémon USA
Pokémon USA, Inc., a subsidiary of The Pokémon Company in Japan, manages the property outside of Asia which includes licensing, marketing, the Pokémon Trading Card Game, an animated TV series, home entertainment, the official Pokémon website, and online retail center www.Pokémoncenter.com. Celebrating its 10th worldwide anniversary in 2006, Pokémon was launched in Japan in 1996 for play on Nintendo’s Game Boy and has since evolved into a global cultural phenomenon. Pokémon was introduced in North America in September 1998 and today is one of the most popular toy and entertainment properties in the world. For more information, visit www.Pokemon.com.

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