DRAGON BALL Creator Akira Toriyama Has Passed Away At 68

DRAGON BALL Creator Akira Toriyama Has Passed Away At 68

Arguably one of the greatest and most influential shonen manga creators of all-time, Dragon Ball mangaka Akira Toriyama has sadly passed away due to acute subdural hematoma.

By MarkJulian - Mar 08, 2024 02:03 AM EST
Filed Under: Dragon Ball
Source: Dragon Ball Official Website

Sad news has emerged out of Japan in the late hours of Thursday night.

Celebrated mangaka Akira Toriyama has suddenly passed away due to acute subdural hematoma, a condition where blood collects between the skull and the surface of the brain. Toriyama was 68-years-old.

Born April 5, 1955, Toriyama burst onto the manga scene in 1978 with the anthology adventure series, Wonder Island. Toriyama never considered a lifelong career in manga, at the time, he was just looking to make a bit of cash after losing his job at an advertising agency.

However, Wonder Island and its sequel series flopped with Japanese audiences and it was Toriyama's stubborn nature that led him to stick with the profession as he became determined to produce something that would become a hit.

He eventually found success with Dr. Slump, which was serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump from 1980 to 1984, and became a runaway hit.

After a few other, short-lived series, Toriyama eventually found the success he craved with 1984's Dragon Ball. A series that would go on to become arguably the most popular manga series, outside of Japan. 

Toriyama would also go on to provide character designs for several popular video games including Dragon Quest, Chrono Trigger, and Blue Dragon.

With over 260 million copies sold worldwide, the series ranks 4th on the list of all-time best-selling manga series, despite the fact that Toriyama completed the series back in 1995. The manga still regularly ranks on the list of best-selling manga series for any given year.

A statement on the official Dragon Ball website reads:

Dear Friends and Partners,

We are deeply saddened to inform you that Manga creator Akira Toriyama passed away on March 1st due to acute subdiral hematoma. He was in age of 68.

It's our deep regret that he still had several works in the middle of creation with great enthusiasm. Also, he would have many more things to achieve.

However, he has left many manga titles and works of art to this world. Thanks to the support of so many people around the world, he has been able to continue his creative activities for over 45 years. We hope that Akira Toriyama's unique world of creation continues to be loved by everyone for a long time to come.

We inform you this sad news, with gratefulness for your kindness during his lifetime.

Funeral service was held with his family and very few relatives. Following his wishes for tranquility, we respectfully inform you that we would not accept flowers, condolences gifts, visiting, offerings and others. Also, we ask you to refrain from conducting interviews with his family.

Future plan for commemorate fathering is not decided, we will let you know when it's confirmed. We deeply thank you for understanding and support as always.

March 8, 2024



On the official Japanese website for Shuiesha Shonen Jump, One Piece creator Eiichiro Oda had the following to say regarding Toriyama's passing.

"Not only manga artists, but for all active industry creatives, the excitement when Dragon Ball was serialized is deeply rooted in their childhood. That existence is a great tree. For manga artists who came from my generation, the closer I got to Toriyama's works, the more I realized that they had a greater presence."

For many anime and manga fans, their first exposure to the genre came in the form of Dragon Ball, especially here in North America. Toriyama's untimely passing is a great loss and he will be dearly missed by his fans and fellow manga creators. He leaves behind a wife and two, adult children.

A notorious recluse, Toriyama seldom left his home studio in Kiyosu, following the completion of the Dragon Ball manga. 

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