Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

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XStylus
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Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by XStylus » Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:16 am

Greetings, everyone!

Usually, it’s around this time that we post the rules to the forthcoming AX AMV Competition to formally kick things off for yet another year.

This message, however, will be a bit different.

For the past seven years, our team has been honored to be the overseers of one of the largest AMV Competitions in America, hosted at the largest Anime convention in America: The Anime Expo AMV Competition.

That time has now come to a close.

We, the AX AMV Team, hereby announce that we have parted ways with Anime Expo and have bid it farewell. To a few of you among our whisper circles this might not be news, and I originally was holding this formal public announcement until AX announced their plans for the event, but... ...well, it's gettin' kinda late...

Before I get into the details, I'd like to first say that I would appreciate it if people would refrain from unleashing pitchforks at AX or flooding their email and social media with gripes over this and whatnot. We're at total peace with this, and we don't want to stain seven years of love with negativity. I want to look back on the past positively. There’s far too much to be proud of to let something like this cloud it. Additionally, we've had great friendships with the folks at AX, and we continue to consider them friends.

---

Since 2012, we've had the great joy to run AX's AMV event. The folks at AX enthusiastically loved the work we did in kind, and certainly the attendees did as well. That said, we've made no secret about the fact that AX is quite an intense juggernaut to work with compared to other cons such as SakuraCon, and we were reaching a point where there was only so much more we could give of ourselves without affecting our personal and professional lives.

We had thus reached the decision that it was time to begin winding things down, and so we had an eye for making AX2019 our final year, perhaps even AX2020 if time was needed for transition since we didn't yet have a successor lined up. However, just as we were about to notify AX of that decision...

In late September 2018 and somewhat out of the blue, AX notified us that they wanted to go a different direction with how AMV was ran. They asked us to consider providing our talents elsewhere in other departments within AX, praised us for our work, and emphasized that their decision wasn't a result of anything we had done on our part.

Naturally, we were quite taken aback by this and asked (repeatedly) for additional details, but our inquiries went without response. To this day, we still don't know what sparked this move. Perhaps it had already been noticed that we were looking towards the exit.

Given the great relationship we had and the appreciation for our work, you can imagine how perplexed and even a bit hurt we were by how this had all taken place. "Were we being let go? If so, why? Or did they just want changes? If so, what kind, and why?" After about a month of thought on the matter and with no info forthcoming, we figured that the best case scenario (if they were still open to us operating AMV) was that there would be changes asked that would make an already difficult juggernaut even more difficult.

We decided that the best thing we could do under the circumstances was to gracefully step out of the way and let AX evolve the event in whatever way it wished. After all, this was our "out," albeit a kind of sad one because although we trust that the old saying of "it's nothing personal, just business" applies here, to us the event has always been very dear and personal.

We would've liked one last on-stage farewell to the audience, but we are proud of what we achieved with the time we had. We took a beleaguered AMV event with a tarnished history and built a polished show that set new standards for professionalism and presentation that other AMV events have since emulated. As for myself personally, the skills I learned from that helped springboard me into my present career and dream job. I'll always look back on those years fondly.

We don't know who will come after us (though we do know a new AMV Event Coordinator has been chosen), but we hope above all that whoever comes after us will be able to build something greater for the next generation. We feel that we've achieved all that we could achieve. It's appropriate for new blood to come forward and build something fresh, and we hope the attendees respond well.

Some words of advice to our successor:
1: You will live or die (very publicly and on stage) by your prep.
2: Make the event your own. Rather than mimic what we did, ditch the rulebook on how an AMV event is 'supposed' to run and take this chance to create something fresh.
3: Fight viciously for the editors. Treat them like red carpet rock stars because without them, you have NO event.

Anyway, time for our team to get down to business on getting ready for a great AMV event at SakuraCon, an event that remains quite personal to everyone involved from the top down, and one that we expect to remain at for quite a few more years to come.
Sakura Con 2013-2019 - AMV something something of something.
Anime Expo 2012-2018 - Emeritus AMV Coordinator

“Understanding is a three-edged sword.” -J. Michael Straczynski

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by Rider4Z » Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:35 am

Admit it. Y'all are leaving cuz you have my back :wink:

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by Kireblue » Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:40 am

IMO, the way that Anime Expo handled this situation is pretty unforgivable. The competition at AX was one of the most renowned AMV events in the country. And the hard work that you put into it made you one of respected coordinators around. So this doesn't just feel like they slapped you in the face. It feels like they slapped the entire AMV community. So although I don't have any ill will towards whoever takes over AX's future AMV programming, I won't be entering the competition this year.

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by General Agemo » Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:50 am

Oh man, wasn't expecting this news. Although based on a vague tweet way back when last year guess I should have expected something to be going on. AX has been my home convention for 9 going on 10 years now, and admittedly some the best times I had was with the competition. I've only been at it the past 3 years, but there were the best highlights for me and I probably wouldn't be talking to some of the people I do now if I didn't join that 2016. Even if it wasn't much, just seeing my AMV on the big screen during pre-show last year was such a great moment to have for myself. Its sad to know you guys won't be here from here on out, but I guess this is the reality of the situation. Even if I didn't know any of the staff personally, I thank all of you for everything you guys did all these years and giving me some of the best times at AX. Good luck to you and everyone from here on out.

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by Tigrin » Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:09 am

The AX AMV competition meant a lot to me... It's how I first saw AMVs and I always respected the level of quality and what it meant to be up there on the big screen. Some of my best memories are the past few years that I competed at AX and got to witness thousands of people's responses to my AMVs. I'll definitely never forget the feeling of seeing my Death Note video pop up as an honorable mention and the peel of laughter from the crowd. Or the moment I got the finalist notice for my YLIA video and burst into tears. I started going to AX again to be with friends and eventually the AMVs became the focus of my trips. It was something I looked forward to every year. But between this and the other ways the convention has been mishandled over the years, I don't think I'll be attending my "home" con anymore. I wish the best of luck to the next coordinator though.

Thanks for everything you guys did over the years and put up with, you ran a show that meant a lot to a lot of people not just in the AMV community.

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by XStylus » Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:23 am

Tigrin wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:09 am
... Or the moment I got the finalist notice for my YLIA video and burst into tears.
I was meticulous with the first sentence of those notices, too. I wanted it to have maximum impact, and for the recipient to know just how great an accomplishment it was just to be a finalist. It's a message only a special few ever had the privilege to see.

Subject: "Anime Expo 2016 AMV Competition - YOU GOT IN!!!"
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Last edited by XStylus on Sat Mar 09, 2019 10:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
Sakura Con 2013-2019 - AMV something something of something.
Anime Expo 2012-2018 - Emeritus AMV Coordinator

“Understanding is a three-edged sword.” -J. Michael Straczynski

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by speedy180 » Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:36 am

Kireblue wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:40 am
IMO, the way that Anime Expo handled this situation is pretty unforgivable. The competition at AX was one of the most renowned AMV events in the country. And the hard work that you put into it made you one of respected coordinators around. So this doesn't just feel like they slapped you in the face. It feels like they slapped the entire AMV community. So although I don't have any ill will towards whoever takes over AX's future AMV programming, I won't be entering the competition this year.
Agree 100% Erik
It is really insulting how you all where treated and I can't imagine what that must of felt like at the time. Y'all ran some amazing Contest and deserve all the praise.
Last edited by speedy180 on Thu Mar 14, 2019 12:17 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by Ileia » Fri Mar 08, 2019 3:20 am

I hate seeing another ACen situation and it sucks that you didn't get to do an official farewell via the con, but I hope you're able to just think fondly on the years that you ran an awesome show. You're right, the AX contest did used to have a bad rep and I only started entering after you guys took over and transformed it. I'm happy we still have Sakura-Con to fill that spot. :)

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by XStylus » Fri Mar 08, 2019 3:25 am

speedy180 wrote:
Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:36 am
It is really insulting how you all where threaten and I can't imagine what that must of felt like at the time. Y'all ran some amazing Contest and deserve all the praise.
We weren't threatened at all, ever. As I said, we had great relationships with everyone involved. That's part of what made the decision confusing for us, but [shrug].
Sakura Con 2013-2019 - AMV something something of something.
Anime Expo 2012-2018 - Emeritus AMV Coordinator

“Understanding is a three-edged sword.” -J. Michael Straczynski

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Re: Anime Expo AMV - Farewell & thanks for the memories

Post by Tarage » Fri Mar 08, 2019 3:52 am

I wonder what will happen to the AMV room, if it will exist at all.

Thanks for the years of hard work.

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