Saturday, September 20, 2008

Alakazam the Great

is a Japanese anime film, based on the legend ''Journey to the West'', and was one of the earliest anime films to be released in the United States. Based on the manga by Osamu Tezuka, he was named as a director of the film by Toei Company. However, Tezuka later stated that the only time he was in the studio was to pose for publicity photos. His involvement as a consultant for the adaptation of his manga, and in promoting the film, however, led to his interest in animation.


Alakazam is a young and brave monkey who convinces all the other monkeys to make him their king. After attaining the throne and learning magic, he becomes so vain that he goes to heaven to challenge the gods. He is defeated by King Amo, and sentenced to serve as the bodyguard of Prince Amat in order to learn humility.


* Alakazam/
* DeeDee the Monkey/RinRin
* Sir Quigley Broken Bottom/Chohakkai
* Max Lulipopo/Sagojo
* Prince Amat/Sanzo-hoshi
* King Amo/Shaka-nyorai
* Queen Amass/Kanzeon
* Fester/Shoryu
* King Gruesome/Gyu-Mao
* Queen Gruesome/Rasetsu-jo
* Herman/Kinkaku
* Vermin/Ginkaku

U.S. release

The film was released in the United States on July 26 1961. For the American release, bandleader Les Baxter was hired to compose a new soundtrack. Teen idol Frankie Avalon supplied the singing voice of Alakazam , and Sterling Holloway provided narration. Despite a large marketing budget and heavy promotion, the movie did not do well in America.

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