As you know, a Berserk exhibition is planned in Tokyo early next year. One of the planned exhibits is a 1:1 scale statue of Zodd in his apostle form, reproducing the famous scene from volume 22.
In order to produce that statue, Hakusensha is organizing a crowdfunding campaign on a Japanese platform called Greenfunding. The goal is to obtain 10 million yen, or about 100,000 US dollars.
It's fairly classic as far as crowdfunding goes: backers get rewards depending on how much money they're pledging through a system of tiers.
Here are the rewards being offered (each successive tier gets all items from the ones that precede it):
¥1,000: A generic thank you card from Miura.
¥7,000: An original "character fine board". It's an illustration printed on canvas. The size is F3, meaning 273 x 220 x 20 mm.
¥12,000: A booklet containing the storyboards of two episodes (A4 size).
¥18,000: A framed "character fine graph" depicting Zodd, chosen at random among a set of three. A5 size (210 x 148 mm). These are high quality reproductions. In addition, a name of your choosing will appear on a panel inside the venue.
¥35,000: All three framed "character fine graphs".
¥70,000: A set of pin badges depicing Zodd, Irvine, Locus, Grunbeld and Griffith. They come with a display frame. Limited to 99 backers, 95 still available.
¥150,000: A Shikishi (autograph board) depicting an original illustration of Guts, signed by Miura. Limited to 10 backers, and was gone in less than 30 minutes after the campaign launched.
¥1,000,000: A 1:1 scale replica of the Dragon Slayer in Fibre-reinforced plastic. 2.3 meters long, weighing 10 kg. Limited to 3 backers, two still available.
As of now, 194 backers have pledged just over 6 million yen to the campaign, so it's 60% complete. It has 11 days left. It has been progressing steadily but slowly, after a quick start that brought it to 32% as the hardcore fans rushed to the pricier tiers.
There might have been some uncertainty as to whether or not it would reach its goal, however the campaign announced on Friday that 20 more signed Shikishi would be made available on Wednesday 21, 12:00 JST. They will be offered at the same price (¥150,000), but will have a different illustration. To apologize to the backers of the first Shikishi tier, they will get an additional Zodd character fine board.
Assuming this new tier is met with the same success as the first one, the campaign will be brought to 90% completion, and with episode 362 coming out this week, there's little doubt it will see an influx of fans that will push it past 100%. This matters because money will be charged (and rewards sent) only if the campaign succeeds. Rewards shipment is planned for between February and March 2021.
And now we're getting to the interesting part: how can international fans contribute to the campaign and get the rewards? Because that's where it gets tricky. Greenfunding.jp only accepts credit cards that were issued in Japan, and the rewards will only be shipped to Japanese addresses. That means we need to use a third party. I contacted around ten specialized companies to ask whether they would provide this service. So far these have told me that they would do it:
There may be more, as not all of them have replied, but these seem reliable to me. Do note however that I can't personally vouch for each of them.
Many of our members have experience with Japanese brokering services, but for those who don't, you basically send them money in advance along with your purchase request, and they will execute the purchase (or in this case pledge) on your behalf and then forward you the goods when they get them. They take a commission in the process. Between that and shipping (domestic + international), the total price is sometimes well above that of the original item, so please keep that in mind. Still, this is a way to participate in the crowdfunding campaign and receive those rewards for those who are interested.
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