Manga Wiki

Katsuhiro Otomo (大友 克洋 Ōtomo Katsuhiro?, born April 14, 1954) is a Japanese manga artist, film director, and screenwriter. He is best known as the creator of the manga Akira and its anime adaptation. Otomo has also directed several live-action films, such as the 2006 feature film adaptation of the Mushishi manga.


Katsuhiro Otomo was born in Miyagi Prefecture and grew up in Tome-gun. While he was in high school he was fascinated with movies, often taking a three-hour train during school holidays just to see them. In 1973 he graduated high school and left Miyagi, heading to Tokyo with the hopes of becoming a manga artist. In October 4, 1973, he published his first work, a manga adaptation of Prosper Merimee's short novel Mateo Falcone, titled A Gun Report.

In 1979, after writing multiple short-stories for the magazine Action, Otomo created his first science-fiction work, titled Fireball. Although the manga was never completed, it is regarded as a milestone in Otomo's career as it contained many of the same themes he would explore in his later, more successful manga such as Domu. Domu began serialization in January 1980 and ran for two years until completed. In 1983, it was published in book form and would win the Nihon SF Taisho Award[1], the Japanese equivalent to the Nebula Award.

In 1982, Otomo made his anime debut, working as character designer for the animated film Harmagedon. The next year, Otomo began work on a manga, which would become his most acclaimed and famous work: Akira. It took eight years to complete and would eventually culminate in 2000 pages of artwork. In 1987, Otomo continued working in anime, directing his first animated work for the first time, a segment in Neo Tokyo, which he also wrote. He followed this up with two segments in the anime anthology Robot Carnival.

While the serialization of Akira was taking place, Otomo decided to animate it into a feature film, although the full manga story was yet to be finished. In 1988, the animated film Akira was released.

Otomo has recently worked extensively with noted studio Sunrise. The studio has animated and produced his recent projects, including the 2004 feature film Steamboy, 2006's Freedom Project and his latest project, SOS! Tokyo Metro Explorers: The Next, released in 2007.

Otomo is apparently going to be the executive producer of the live action adaptation of his manga series Akira.[2]


Manga/Comic books

Year Title Role(s)
1973 A Gun Report Writer, Penciller
1979 Short Peace Writer, Penciller
1979 Highway Star Writer, Penciller
1979 Fireball Writer, Penciller
1980 Domu: A Child's Dream Writer, Penciller
1980 Kibun wa mō Sensō Writer, Penciller
1981 Sayonara Nippon Writer, Penciller
1982 Akira Writer, Penciller
1984 Visitors Writer, Penciller
1990 Kanojo no Omoide... Writer, Penciller
1990 The Legend of Mother Sarah Writer
1991 ZeD Writer
1996 SOS! Tokyo Metro Explorers Writer, Penciller
1996 Batman: Black & White #4 (The Third Mask) Writer, Penciller
2001 Hipira: The Little Vampire Writer
2006 Park Writer, Penciller


  • Kaba (1989)
  • Akira Club (1995)
  • Akira Animation Archives (2003)



Year Title Segment
1987 Neo Tokyo Construction Cancellation Order
1987 Robot Carnival Opening, Ending
1988 Akira
1991 World Apartment Horror (live-action)
1995 Memories Cannon Fodder
2004 Steamboy
2006 Mushishi (live-action)


Year Title Segment
1987 Neo Tokyo Construction Cancellation Order
1987 Robot Carnival Opening, Ending
1988 Akira
1991 Roujin Z
1995 Memories Cannon Fodder, Stink Bomb
2001 Metropolis
2004 Steamboy
2006 Mushishi


  • "Freedom". (May 2007) Newtype USA. p. 23.

External links

32x28px Anime and manga portal
Biography portal

br:Katsuhiro Ōtomo gl:Katsuhiro Otomo ko:오토모 가쓰히로 it:Katsuhiro Ōtomo nl:Katsuhiro Otomo pl:Katsuhiro Ōtomo pt:Katsuhiro Otomo ru:Отомо, Кацухиро fi:Katsuhiro Ōtomo sv:Katsuhiro Otomo zh:大友克洋