Magical DoReMi (lost Ocean Studios English dub pilot of anime series; 1999)

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The international logo.

Status: Lost

Magical DoReMi, also known as Ojamajo Doremi, is a magical-girl anime series by Toei Animation that ran for 51 episodes on TV Asahi in Japan between February 1999 to January 2000. The show later inspired three followup seasons, two theatrical films, a direct-to-video series, as well as manga and light novels. In 2003, the New York-based 4Kids Entertainment licensed the first entry.[1] The company produced an English dub that had a shortlived run on their 4KidsTV FOX Saturday morning block between 2005 and 2006 before being ultimately finished as a web-exclusive.[2][3]

However, earlier attempts to launch the franchise in the western world were made. In August 2000, Bandai reported that it had signed a deal with Mattel to release Magical DoReMi toys in the United States the following year.[4] This never happened. Toys inspired by the series would eventually hit stores in the country to coincide with the 4Kids dub in 2006, though instead of Mattel, Bandai America handled distribution.[5] The aborted Mattel line was believed to tie-in with an unverified offline report that the series would be headed to Nickelodeon or Fox Kids in 2001.

At an unspecified time prior to the 4Kids dub, Toei Animation commissioned an English language pilot and promo from the Vancouver, Canada-based Ocean Productions.[6][7] Recorded at their Bluewater Studio in Calgary, little is known outside the fact it was allegedly directed by Teri Snelgrove.[8]

Other dubs may provide insight on some possible name changes. Magical DoReMi aired in France, Germany, Mexico and Spain with an alternate set of names provided by Toei.[9] They are:

  • Hazuki Fujiwara became "Emily."
  • Aiko Senoo became "Sophie."
  • Onpu Segawa became "Nicole" (although the French dub used the name "Loulou")
  • Pop Harukaze became "Bibi."
  • The witches Majorika and Majoruka became "Majorka" and "Malissa."
  • Hazuki's fairy Rere became "Mimi."
  • Aiko's fairy Mimi became "Fifi."
  • Onpu's fairy Roro became "Lolo."

Doremi retained her name, and the other girls managed to keep their surnames. These names were also used in the dubs of the second season of DoReMi. However, in markets where dubs of further material were released, the Japanese names were largely retained, with the exception of the French version. This implies English localization work may have only been done for the first two seasons. Further hints pointing to this include the fact that the German as well as the Mexican dub only covered those initial two seasons.

The Mexican production is of particular interest as it was created in conjunction with Cloverway International in 2001, who acted as Toei's licensing agency in the Americas until 2004. Through this partnership, Mattel launched a line of Magical DoReMi dolls in Latin America alongside the show.[10] Both the dub and the advertisement for the toys feature an alternate English language logo.[11][12]

See also

  • Magical DoReMi - The series received an English dub recorded in Singapore that's now lost to time.