Yes everyone you read that right. Jerome Mazandarani of Manga Entertainment UK has issued a statement apologising and explaining why they have had to cancel it’s intended Blu-Ray releases of K-On! and (the previously delayed) Disappearance Of Haruhi Suzumiya. This statement comes after it was brought to light earlier today (Friday 6th January) that the K-On! collection would now only be receiving a DVD release and the The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya would no longer be receiving UK Blu-Ray release at all.
The latter was originally meant to be a simultaneous release with the DVD version back in November but due to “major problems with production” it was pushed back to February.
You can read the the full statement posted on twitter by Jerome Mazandarani below.
“On behalf of Manga I wanted to apologize to all of those UK based customers who have been left bitterly disappointed by our decision not to release these titles on Blu-ray after publicly suggesting on this forum that we were planning on doing so. Please allow me to explain our decision.
I will start with K-On first. My original plan was to release K-On as a complete season set on double disc DVD and Blu-ray at the same time. However, we were reliant on Bandai US supplying us their English dub and when they announced they would release K-On! as 4 individual DVD and BD volumes in America we had to agree to follow suit if we wanted to release K-On! around the same time as them. I made the decision to delay our 2-disc BD release until Spring 2012 rather than copy Bandai and produce 4 very expensive single disc BD releases. Once we got to the end of 2011 we learnt that the cost of access to the dubs plus the high cost of accessing the HD master, authoring and mastering of the discs and manufacturing was prohibitively expensive. In addition, we also realised that we would not be able to break even on the production of the Blu-ray.
With regards to the Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya we were meant to release a Blu-ray in November and found out that the BD disc replication master we were sharing with Madman and which was supplied by Bandai USA did not work on Region B Playstation 3, so we had to scrap it and start again. Once again, we had to pay high access fees for the dub, and would have to pay a very steep access fees for the HD-master (we cloned Madman’s PAL DVD replication master for our DVD) and that combined with new authoring and mastering fees left us with another release that was going to lose Manga money. If Manga keeps losing money we go out of business and everyone loses!
I spend all of my time am the Manga office fighting tough and nail for you guys, the British anime fans, to ensure that we pick up the best new series and movies and get them out here as soon as possible. I listen to your comments; every last one of them, every day here on Twitter and Facebook and I answer most of them too. No-one should doubt how much I and my colleagues here at MangaUK care about you, the customer. We do not take decisions like this lightly. I personally, fought to maintain these Blu-ray releases against stiff opposition from my superiors, but the commercial considerations of running a successful company overruled my objections about the damage to our brand’s credibility should we not release these titles.
In summary, I would say that while we have made a sensible commercial decision, we have created a situation that is alienating to a good deal many of you and I sincerely hope that over time we can make it up to you.
So, there you have it. Straight from the horse’s mouth. I cannot apologize enough to the customers we have disappointed with this decision. I hope that with time you can appreciate us for what we tend to get right, more than what we tend to get wrong. I am personally looking forward to 2012 and you have my assurance that any new BD releases announced for this year will be released. We already have Samurai Girls, Bleach Movies 1,2 and 3, Mardock Scramble and Roujin Z confirm by @KazeUK plus a whole heap more to confirm later in the year. We have learnt a lot from 2011, particularly when it comes to Blu-ray and I am confident we will start making better decisions that benefit both the business and you, our valued customers going forward.
Jerome Mazandarni Head of marketing & acquisitions Manga Entertainment LTD (UK)”