Saturday, May 25, 2024
Home Culture Akira Toriyama, the creator of the manga ‘Dragon Ball’, dies at 68 | Culture

Akira Toriyama, the creator of the manga ‘Dragon Ball’, dies at 68 | Culture

by News Room
0 comment

Akira Toriyama, the influential creator of the manga franchise and anime Dragon Ballhas died at the age of 68 due to an acute cerebral hemorrhage, as announced this Friday in a statement by his production company, Bird Studios, and the official account of Dragon Ball on social network X. The cartoonist died on the 1st, and the funeral has already been celebrated with his closest circle of family. The statement ensures that the artist was in the “full creation” of several works, on which he worked “with great enthusiasm.” In any case, the text praises that the artist brought “many manga titles and works of art to this world.”

Born in Nagoya (Aichi prefecture), Akira Toriyama hooked several generations since the adventures of Son Goku, the protagonist of the series, began in the mid-eighties. Dragon Ball, a boy with spiky hair who had a monkey’s tail, traveled on a cloud, learned martial arts at breakneck speed, threw energy blows shouting “life wave!” and he grew up to become a super warrior. The universe created around this character has continued to grow since then until it has become a franchise with numerous series, movies, dolls, comics, video games and more.

Born in the Japanese city of Nagoya in 1955, Toriyama showed an interest in drawing from childhood, like many children of his time, but he, unlike others, persevered. He left his mark on the well-known manga series Astro Boyby Osamu Tezuka. He briefly worked in an advertising company designing posters, before starting out as a comic book artist. He made his debut as a cartoonist in 1978, with Wonder Island, the one who followed Dr. Slump. But it was Dragon Ball, created in 1984, the story that became a true international phenomenon, with its television adaptation and its jump to other platforms.

Its enormous diffusion changed the history of manga and popularized it in much of the planet. He sold millions of copies and contributed to the golden age of Japanese comics, becoming one of the country’s most renowned authors. dragon ball It is the fourth best-selling manga of all time, with about 260 million copies, according to the specialized website Comic Book Resources. In 2019, its author was named Knight of the French Order of Arts and Sciences.

In Spain alone, Toriyama has sold more than 22 million copies since his work began to be published in 1992, according to the label that distributes it in Spanish, Planeta. In the book that celebrates the 40 years of the publisher’s comics division, a text by Chigusa Ogino, director of the Tuttle-Mori rights agency, recalls how it was forged “the first time Dragon Ball It was published outside of Japan”: it was November 1991, and the publisher Shueisha contacted his company because “it kept receiving faxes from Barcelona” asking about the rights to that work. They commissioned Ogino to solve the matter. When he picked up the stack of papers he realized that the same fax had been sent from Spain over and over again. “It showed me one thing very clearly: determination,” Ogino writes. So, instead of responding by the same method, he considered that a greater effort was needed: he picked up the phone and called Planeta DeAgostini Cómics. 33 years of uninterrupted collaboration began, reports Tommaso Koch.

Akira Toriyama, en 1982.JIJI PRESS (EFE)

Success took him by surprise. He considered Dragon Ball “a kind of miracle,” according to what he said in a 2013 interview with the media Asahi and collected and translated into English by the specialized website Kanzenshuuu. “For the fact that I, with my perverted and irritating personality, was capable of doing respectable work and that it was accepted by the public,” he justified. In that interview he also assured that the only thing he intended with the manga was to provide “entertainment”, which lacked a “message”, and he did not understand the reason for its success beyond borders. His only goal, as he said then, was “to make Japanese children happy.” And he described the manga artist this way: “Neither worried about the outside world nor about making a lot of money, its authors do not sleep and risk their lives creating, simply because they are determined to make people enjoy themselves. I guess that purity is probably its strong point.”

“Thanks to the support of so many people around the world, (the author) has been able to continue his creative activities for more than 45 years. We hope that the unique world of Akira Toriyama’s creation will continue to be loved by everyone for a long time,” thanks the statement from Bird Studios. Due to the creator’s express “wishes for peace of mind,” the studio informs in the text that they do not accept “flowers, gifts of condolence, visits, offerings and others.” He also asks that people refrain from interviewing his family. And it is specified that the plans for an eventual “commemorative meeting” have not been decided, and if there are any, they will be made known in due course.

Leave a Comment