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Creator of $17B Dragon Ball Franchise Akira Toriyama Has Given Up on Drawing Manga: “It just didn’t feel right”

dragon ball

Legendary artist and Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama is no longer drawing manga after losing his favorite tool. He has been a long-time illustrator of the popular Japanese franchise loved by millions of anime fans around the world.

Dragon Ball Super
Dragon Ball Super

Dragon Ball is one of the longest-enduring series that catapulted manga publication to new heights in the mid-1980s and mid-1990s. The franchise is known for its thrilling action-adventure story, as well as exaggerated fight scenes that dominated the shonen genre.

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Dragon Ball Creator Akira Toriyama Explains The Importance Of His Pen Holder

Akira Toriyama has unfortunately given up on drawing because he lost his favorite pen holder. The artist cherished this equipment due to its sentimental value, having purchased it when he was only 14 years of age. This pen holder witnessed the entirety of his career as a manga artist, and losing it felt strange to him.

Toriyama misplaced his drawing tool while working on Sand Land, an upcoming project of one of his manga series. In a translated post via Anime Senpai, the artist explained why he decided to stop drawing:

Sand Land was finished by scanning the inked paper manuscript into a computer and using software to apply solid colors to my own tones. I probably hardly slept at all… After finishing all the episodes, I lost my beloved wooden pen holder that I had been using since before my debut.”

Akira Toriyama Dragon Ball
Akira Toriyama

He described how valuable this tool was for him and how it became a part of himself for its familiarity:

It was a pen holder that had become familiar to my hand over a long time, being carved and worn down with a knife and sandpaper. It was a pen holder that had become familiar to my hand over a long period of time.”

He also noted that purchasing a replacement did not feel right at all, thus eventually giving up on his passion:

I bought a new pen holder and tried sharpening it this way and that, but it just didn’t feel right. Since then, I have used it as an excuse for hardly drawing any manga (laugh).”

While Toriyama’s statement on losing his pen holder as the reason for no longer making manga is quite inconclusive, it is evident that this particular tool holds a significant value to the artist. In his interview with Dragon Ball: El Manga Legendario magazine, he explained how he used several pen holders over the years, although he would always end up returning to the original one.

The manga artist admitted his fault and said that his carelessness was to blame. Toriyama also shared that it took him more than half an hour to rummage through his office in order to find the missing equipment.

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When Will Sand Land Animated Movie Come Out?

Sand Land
Sand Land

Despite working on the Dragon Ball franchise for decades, Toriyama confessed that he prefers his most recent work on Sand Land. He noticed that his skill and craftsmanship are more remarkable in this project.

The original Sand Land manga series ran from May to August 2000 on Weekly Shonen Jump. It gained critical success for its enjoyable and compelling plot. The animated movie is slated for release in Japan on August 18, 2023, while its worldwide premiere is still to be announced.

Source: Anime Senpai

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Written by Ariane Cruz

I write feature articles for FandomWire, mostly focusing on Marvel, DC, Star Wars, Netflix, HBO, and Hollywood news.