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Leiji Matsumoto


Leiji Matsumoto (born Akira Matsumoto), January 25, 1938 in Kurume, Fukuoka. He currently lives in Nerima, Tokyo, where he exercises his mangaka activity. His wife Miyako Maki is also a manga artist. His father was a pilot and served as lieutenant colonel (commissioned officer) of the Japanese Imperial Air Force. His younger brother, Susumu Matsumoto, is a teacher at Waseda University.

During his first year at high school, Leiji Matsumoto was the winner of the first competition for young talents of manga series by the magazine Manga Shône, with Mitsubachi no bôken (The adventures of a bee). Shortly after in 1954, he made his debut as a professional manga artist.

We can find among his major works:

Otoko Oidon I’m a man (winner of the 3rd Kodansha Cultural Prize)
Ginga Tetsudô 999 (Galaxy Express 999) The Cockpit (winner of the 23rd Shogakukan manga award)
Uchû Senkan Yamato (Space Battleship Yamato) (winner of the 6th Seiun Award in the film and theater category, media).

Although he is overall known as a science-fiction mangaka, he has drawn a lot of different forms and types of manga: shôjo manga, animal stories, manga of war, stories of everyday life ( called “stories of 4 tatamis and a half”), strips…


The animated feature Ginga Tetsudo 999 (Galaxy Express 999), released in 1979, is emblematic of Japan’s passion for animation from the mid-1970s to the first half of the 1980s. animated feature film of the history of Japanese animation to rank number 1 of the annual box office of the archipelago. This example among many others shows how much the activity of Leiji Matsumoto went beyond the simple frame of the manga. He is at this time the rising star of the “media mix”.

More recently, in 2001, he collaborated with the duo DAFT PUNK, the leaders of the French electro, then he pays homage to the mythical group of the British rock, QUEEN, continuing thus to be energetically involved in various artistic genres.


In fall 2012, a new feature, Space Pirate Captain Harlock, was released in Japanese theaters. The following year, it was distributed worldwide, particularly in France and Italy, where it achieved a record of entries, that placed it “number 1 of Japanese films”.
The film receives the following prizes:
– Grand Prix of Light Japan Awards of the International 3D & Advanced Imaging Society in 2013
– Best International Animation Award of the 5th edition of the 3D CREATIVE ARTS AWARDS organized by the International 3D & Advanced Imaging Society
– Best Animated Feature Film Award at VFX-JAPAN Awards in 2014
It also takes part of the nominees for the Best Animation Award of the 37th Japan Academy Prizes.

In 2017, Leiji Matsumoto receives a career award at the Tokyo Anime Awards, as well as the Diamond Grand Prix in the animation category of the 26th edition of the Japanese Movie Critics Awards.

In July 2018, the river shuttle “Emeraldas“, the third of the boat series of which he realized the design on his own, is inaugurated and commissioned by Tokyo Cruise Ship.

From 2001 until now, Leiji Matsumoto has received numerous awards in Japan and abroad.
In 2001, Japan he received the Medal of Honor on the Purple Ribbon (medal awarded for artistic careers), and in 2010, the distinction of the Order of the Rising Sun, with golden rays and rosette.
In 2012, he was made Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters, in France.

In 2018, he was named Grand Maestro in Italy, receiving a medal of Arts and Letters from the city of Lucca.

He is also very active in other areas: Member of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), he teaches as a special speaker at Digital Hollywood University.
Currently, he is also Executive Director of the Japan Cartoonist Association (J.C.A), Director of the ACCS (Association of Copyright for Computer Software) and Chairman of the YAC (Young Astronauts Club). He teaches as a professor in the media and content category at Takarazuka University and as an external professor at Kyôto Sangyo University.

In 2014, he celebrated 60 years of career as a mangaka.
2018 is the year in which he celebrates his 80th birthday.

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Cédric Biscay
Cédric Biscay

What an honor for Shibuya Productions to celebrate the fifth anniversary of our event the Monaco Anime Game International Conferences (MAGIC) on the 9th of March.

Who could have believed, that a Gala Dinner, which was initially organized to celebrate the creation of the company, was going to transform into an inevitable yearly pop culture event in the Principality of Monaco.

Who would have thought that after only 4 years, MAGIC will be exported to Japan, in Kyoto, Japanese culture’s heart.

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