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Influential Manga Humorist Fujio Akatsuka (1935 - 2008)

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Manga luminary Fujio Akatsuka passed away of pneumonia on August 2nd at age 72. The artist, known as the "gag assassin", was diagnosed esophageal cancer in 1998 and later suffered a brain hemorrhage in 2002. In addition to his seminal gag manga work, such as Tensai Bakabon (Genius Bakabon) and Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and MAD magazine inspired Osomatsu-kun, Akatsuka's Himitsu no Akko-chan (Akko-chan's Secret) is considered on the first "magical girl" manga series, in which a young girl secretly transforms into an alternate identity to solve problems. Akatsuka also contributed to the live action Lupin III adaptation, Strange Psycho-Kinetic Strategy. He co-wrote Hoshi No Orpheus, also known as Winds Of Change during Sanrio Films' attempt to market films to Hollywood. In 1964, Akatsuka was recognized with the "Shogakukan Manga Award" for Osomatsu-kun, and in 1997 he received the Literary Giant Award for Japan Cartoonists Association. Through this decade, the earning from his creations placed Akatsuka among names like Inu-Yasha creator Rumiko Takahashi and Naruto creator Masashi Kishimoto in Japan's "The 10 Highest Taxed Manga-ka" report. Other obituaries on note can be read on Big Cartoon Forum Anime News Network Metropolis Gonzo's "moving comic strip" adapation of Akatsuka's Hennako-Chan or "Weird Girl" can be viewed on their YouTube Channel
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