Monday, September 17, 2007

People in Manga to Know About: Osamu Tezuka

Osamu Tezuka
(also called "The Father of Anime")
1928 - 1989
Manga Career Started 1946

Famous works include:
Astro Boy
Black Jack

Quick Bio:
(Look at that, he had a stamp! More than one!)
Writer/artist Tezuka literally invented the "large eyed" character style typical in Japanese animation. In his lifetime, he drew over 150,000 pages of manga (80,000 of those being for published work), started the animation studio Mushi Pro (which pioneered TV animation in Japan) and had his medical degree (which lent him expertise in his series Black jack).

Osamu Tezuka's style is very similar to what we would refer to as "traditional Disney". He loved to do stylized Japanese adaptations of western literature, but his stories covered nearly every type of genre. Some of his work that includes Africans and Vietnamese has been criticized as racist, with exaggerated manners and underdeveloped homes.

Effect on Hobotaku:
It's interesting, but Hobotaku (and other Western otaku) are having an influence on publishers so that they are finally translating Tezuka's works into English and distributing them in America. Which means we'll finally be able to get a much fuller understanding of one of the most innovative and influential people in anime history.

In Conclusion:
Osamu Tezuka is called the Father of Anime because he essentially built this city of manga and anime that we love so much. The next time you're stretched out reading some manga under a table or watching a new AMV, spare a moment to think of the kindly looking dude in the beret up there, because a little bit of him is in there.

Check out Tezuka lectures and exhibitions at the Marvel of Manga Blog

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