Tokyopop founder Stuart Levy is currently preparing for a roadtrip with six hand-picked college students that his company dubbed the “otaku six” after a rigorous audition process. The roadtrip will involve travel through the country and stopping by at various conventions in an attempt to find “America’s greatest otaku” and give Tokyopop an opportunity to interact with their fanbase.
Publishers Weekly caught up with Levy to ask him a few quick questions, two of which were rather interesting:
PWCW: What are the participant responsibilities?
SL: The Otaku Six are my crew and cast for the show, my team. They will work with the HQ Crew to find the Greatest Otaku candidates, to research Otaku Spots in each town, and to produce the show with me. They’ll learn marketing, production and how to live on the road in tight quarters.
PWCW: How does the Tokyopop Tour fit into Tokyopop’s overall objectives as a publisher?
SL: We are more than a publisher — we’re a lifestyle and media brand. This is core — it’s about reaching out to our fans and getting to know who they are. They are the reason we exist.
The comment about being a lifestyle and media brand is rather interesting as there are, of course, avenues of the otaku industry that Tokyopop have not yet made headway into — the most significant being games. However, in the past, Stuart Levy has expressed great enthusiasm for both the iPhone and iPad, which would indicate that, perhaps, it’s a little too soon to rule out that possibility.