Why Katsuhiro Otomo now?


Now is the time to rediscover Japanese animation by revisiting the Otomo works that started it all. In the 1970s and 1980s, Japanese animation was almost unknown in Japan. It was Otomo Katsuhiro's AKIRA that changed all that. The array of stunning expressions in the film made people realise that new forms of imagery could be found in Japan. Japanese animation is now viewed all over the world.

プログラム・ディレクター:数土 直志
Program Director:Tadashi Sudo

大友克洋 Katsuhiro Otomo

Katsuhiro Otomo
Cartoonist/Film Director

© Stephane Beaujean


Born in Tome City, Miyagi Prefecture in 1954, Otomo made his debut in 1973 with the manga 'A Gun Report' in the magazine 'Manga Action' (Futabasha), followed by a succession of major works including 'Dome: A Child Dream' and 'AKIRA'. He is one of Japan's leading manga masters, known not only in Japan but also throughout the world for his incomparable expressions. His activities are not limited to manga, as he became involved in animation when he worked as a character designer for "Harmagedon: Genma Wars" (directed by Rintaro) in 1983, and in 1988 directed his own manga AKIRA, which was released in theatres, followed by the original animated film Steamboy (2004). He has also directed original animated films such as Steamboy (2004). He also directed live-action films such as World Apartment Horror (1991) and Bugmaster: MUSHI-SHI (original story by Yuki Urushibara) (2007). He is a great admirer of film director Akira Kurosawa and is recognised as an outstanding figure in film and animation. His manga and graphic expression continue to influence many manga artists, film directors and animation directors across genres to this day. 2013: Medal with Purple Ribbon; 2014: Officier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, France; US Annie Windsor Mackay Award. 2015: Grand Prix at Angoulême, France. In 2022, Kodansha will begin publishing the Complete Works of Katsuhiro Otomo, which will include all of his creative and production work.