July 16th, 2024

‘Dragon Ball’ creator Akira Toriyama dies at 68

By Mari Yamaguchi, The Associated Press on March 8, 2024.

FILE - Dragon Ball Z booth is seen during New York Comic Con at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center on Oct. 12, 2023, in New York. Akira Toriyama, the creator of one of Japan's best-selling “Dragon Ball” and other popular anime who influenced Japanese comics, has died, his studio said Friday, March 8, 2024. He was 68. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File)

TOKYO (AP) – Akira Toriyama, the creator of the best-selling Dragon Ball and other popular anime who influenced Japanese comics, has died, his studio said Friday. He was 68.

Toriyama’s Dragon Ball manga series, which started in 1984, is an international million-seller that also turned into hugely popular anime series, video games and films.

Toriyama died March 1 of a blood clot in his brain, his production office Bird Studio said in a statement.

“It’s our deep regret that he still had several works in the middle of creation with great enthusiasm,” the studio said. “He would have had many more things to achieve. However, he has left many manga titles and works of art to this world.”

The office thanked his fans for their support of his creative activities for over 45 years. “We hope that Akira Toriyama’s unique world of creation continues to be loved by everyone for a long time to come.”

Born in the Aichi prefecture in central Japan in 1955, Toriyama debuted in 1978 in the Weekly Shonen Jump magazine. His Dr Slump series that started in 1980 became a huge hit, elevating him to a best-selling young comic artist.

Dragon Ball, the story of a boy Son Goku and his adventure in search of seven magical balls to make his wishes come true, has sold 260 million copies altogether, according to the studio.

Toriyama also designed the characters for the video game series Dragon Quest. He also received manga and art award in and outside Japan, including the Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters from France in 2019.

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