Legendary mangaka Leiji Matsumoto has died at the age of 85

Veteran mangaka Leiji Matsumoto passed away at the age of 85 on February 13. Studio Leijisha announced the news in a statement thanking fans and everyone who has supported Matsumoto’s works over the years.

Message from Leijisha:

On February 13, 2023, mangaka Leiji Matsumoto left a hospital in the Tokyo area on a journey to the ocean of stars

We are grateful to all the fans who supported him.

Matsumoto always said, “You can meet again in a place that connects to the distant wheel of time.”

We believe in these words and look forward to that day.

The studio is a project focused on the works of Matsumoto and his wife, Miyako Maki, who is also a mangaka. The studio is currently headed by their daughter Makiko Matsumoto.

Following the announcement, messages of support poured in from the manga and anime community to honor the veteran mangaka’s works. Messages come from those including Trigun manga creator Yasuhiro Naitoanimator Hirotoshi Sano, Papua the mangaka What about the Shibataand Dance in the Vampire Bund author Nozoku Tamaki poured out.

Leiji Matsumoto
Volume 1 cover by Leiji Matsumoto Queen Millennium manga

Leiji Matsumoto was born on January 25, 1938. He is best known for his manga work in Space Battleship Yamato (1974), Space Pirate Captain Harlock (1977) and Galaxy Express 999 (1977). He debuted with his first manga work titled Mitsubishi no Boken, debuted in 1954 under his real name Akira Matsumoto. He got his first big break with the 1971 manga Otoko Oydonfollowed by the 1972 dark comedy manga Gun Frontier, and the 1973 short story collection focusing on World War II Senjo Mangaalso known as The cockpit. Other manga he worked on during this time include Queen Millennium (1980), Arcadia of my youth (1982), The Harlock Saga (1998) and Firepower DNAsights 999.9 (1998).

He was also the director of the 1974Space Battleship Yamato adaptation produced by Yoshinobu Nishizaki and animated by Academy Productions. He has also directed other titles such as Star Blazers: The Comet Empire (1978), Star Blazers: The Bolar Wars (1980) and the anime films Farewell to the Space Battleship Yamato: In the Name of Love (1980) and Be forever Yamato (1980).

Matsumoto also worked with French electronic duo Daft Punk to create music videos for their second studio album discovery, released in 2001. The music videos for all the songs on the album were then compiled to create a full-length anime film titled Interstella 5555: the 5story of the 5ecret 5tar 5systemwhich was released in 2003. The film was animated by Toei Animation and supervised by Matsumoto.

Promotional video for Interstellar 5555

source: Leijisha Official Twitter

Hikari Mikadzuki

Bonjour, je m'appelle Hikari ! Je suis une étudiante qui aime colorier et dessiner, lire et écrire. J'aime la musique classique, les bandes sonores et les films (surtout les anime).

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