Japanese Coverage of a French Anime Con

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jul 2, 2011 in Animation, Fandom

I got quite a quick of this TV Asahi report on the Japan Expo which is being held this weekend in Paris, France.

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Sky Doll Space Ship is Ready for an American Lift Off

Posted by Michael Pinto on Feb 19, 2010 in Comic Books

Sky Doll Space Ship #1 (Of 3) illustration by Alessandro Barbucci & Barbara Canepa

Sky Doll Space Ship isn’t actually a new series — it was first published in France. And it looks like Marvel is set to release this three part series by Alessandro Barbucci and Barbara Canepa starting in May. I’d encourage everyone who loves comics to spread the word about this series for two reasons: Firstly I’d love to see more international comics imported into America, and secondly it’s refreshing to see comics escape from the typical superhero clichés that dominate the market. I’m glad that Marvel is getting behind this — it’s also nice to see that they got Pierre-Mony Chan to do a variant cover: Read more…

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Barbarella: The Silly, Sexy, and Sci Fi Side of the Sixties

Posted by Michael Pinto on Oct 10, 2009 in Cinema, Comic Books

Barbarella poster from the 60s

On this day in 1968 the French erotic science fiction film Barbarella was released in the United States. The film failed on pretty much every level as the critics hated it and it made no money at the box office, however thanks to the wonders of home video Barbarella became a cult hit in 1977 when it was re-released. Read more…

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A Century Ago Today: Le Voyage sur Jupiter Premieres in the United States

Posted by Michael Pinto on Aug 13, 2009 in Animation, Cinema

We like to think of sci fi films as something new, but the fact of the matter is that the genre is now over a century old. On this day in 1909 the French film Le Voyage sur Jupiter opened in the United States. Directed by Spanish filmmaker Segundo de Chomón in 1907 the movie is quite similar to Le voyage dans la lune from 1902 by Georges Méliès. Although to his credit Chomón was very good at special effects and shows off a few new tricks here. Read more…

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Aérotrain: A Rocket Powered Railways Experiment from the 60s

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jan 8, 2009 in Tech


The Aérotrain sounds like a plot device from a steampunk novel — a rocket powered railroad car designed to travel on a monorail. This amazing retro tech project was lead by engineer Jean Bertin in France from 1965 until 1977. Sadly Bertin passed away in 1975, and his technology was passed over in favor of high speed trains that used high-powered electrical motors. Shown above is a working prototype from 1967 that was powered by Pratt & Whitney JT12 engine. Below is an early concept model which was created in 1962 which used compressed air: Read more…

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