Otaku USA Magazine
The World Cosplay Summit


Cosplay fans! Do you know this event held every year in Japan called “The World Cosplay Summit•bCrLf? This event has been running annually since 2003 and is sponsored by the Japanese television network Aichi TV. This is a big otaku event with participants and representatives from all over the world joining in. This year, cosplayers from 12 different countries—including Demark, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Brazil, Mexico, China, Korea, Thailand, and Japan— joined in the fun. On August 1, there was a press conference held in Akihabara where cosplayers from each country shared their enthusiastic comments. I was able to go and see them! Everyone’s costume was so well done! Their costumes, hair, and poses were perfect!

On August 4, a cosplay parade was held for a preview event. In all 200 cosplayers paraded through a shotengai (shopping center) located near to where the event was held. On August 5, the competition opened. The top awards were given for two categories: cosplay and entertainment. As a result, two people won the grand prize and both of them were from France. These two boys, named Isabel and Damien, performed parodies of Gundam, Dragonball, Death Note, and Sakura Wars all in Japanese. They then performed the famous Haruhi dance to conlude their performance. It really exited and cheered up the audience! After they won, they said, “We didn’t expect to win! We are so surprised and we are happy that everyone enjoyed!

Of course, the other international participants were amazing as well. I wanted to take this rare opportunity to hear more about the status of cosplay in places outside of Japan. So I interviewed two participants, Chao Shi and Li Nien Nien, from China about the state of cosplay in their home country. They said they had been anime and manga fans for a long time, so doing cosplay came naturally to them. Chao did cosplay of Kuchiki from Bleach and the bad guy from Gulty Gear and Kira Yamato from Gundam Seed Destiny. Meanwhile, Nien Nien did cosplay of Shin from NANA and Toshiro Hitsugaya from Bleach and Kamui from X. In China, they also have cosplay competitions held on stage, along with karaoke contests and space to sell fan art, just like similar events in Japan and the USA! Chao and Li said they often go to such events together and do cosplay. They also said, “We wanted to come to Japan and have communication with cosplayers from many different countries.•bCrLf At the World Cosplay Summit, the pair won their way through the preliminaries and wound up participating in the main event.

Yunmao: How was it participating in the World Cosplay Summit?

Everyone was so kind to me in Japan and the event was brilliantly organized.

From the beginning, I thought that Japan was a beautiful country. As for the event, the level of cosplay was very high.

Yunmao: What did you think about the cosplay from other countries?

I felt that the way they enjoy it is different from we Chinese. Maybe the method of judging changes from country to country.

Every cosplayer had such a high level of quality, it was great.

Yunmao: Have you been to Akihabara?

Chao: Yes! It was amazing and full of anime and manga.

Li: I’ve been too. I saw a lot of interesting stuff.

Yunmao: Do you want to go to an American convention someday?

: Of course!

I really want to go.


Yunmao: Do you have a message for American otaku?

Chao: If there is any opportunity, we want to go to America and do cosplay!

We love what we do very much. It would be nice if we meet through cosplay together.

If there is any opportunity, we want to go to America and do cosplay! We love what we do very much. It would be nice if we meet through cosplay together.

They both seem to be curious about cosplayers and cosplay events outside of China. They said they want to make as many friends as possible. It would be great if they have a chance to meet American cosplayers someday. So the World Cosplay Summit succeeded in gathering many people from around the world to enjoy fun and competition. It concluded as a great success and it looks like another will be held next year. Maybe I should try out next year, huh? I think it would be fun. It would be great if American cosplayers came next year too!