Akira Toriyama, Creator of ‘Dragon Ball,’ Dies at 68



His popular manga inspired numerous television, film and video game adaptations, reaching fans far beyond Japan’s borders.

Richard A. Brooks/AFP — Getty Images; Christophe Pettit Tesson/European Pressphoto Agency; Frederic J. Brown/AFP — Getty Images; Carlo Allegri/Reuters

Akira Toriyama, who was one of Japan’s leading authors of comics and most famous for the highly successful manga and anime franchise “Dragon Ball,” died on March 1. He was 68.

His death was confirmed on Friday in a statement by his manga and design production studio, Bird Studio, and Capsule Corporation Tokyo, which said that the cause was acute subdural hematoma, when blood collects between the skull and brain.

Mr. Toriyama’s body of work, which also includes “Dr. Slump,” and “Sand Land,” is recognizable far beyond Japan’s borders, influencing generations of manga artists and cartoonists. He had several projects in the works at the time of his death, the studio said.

His best-known work, “Dragon Ball,” follows a young boy named Son Goku embarking on a journey to collect the seven wish-granting Dragon Balls. Since its creation in the 1980s, it has spanned 42 volumes, sold millions of copies worldwide and become one of the most famous manga, inspiring television, film and video game adaptations.

Clockwise from top left: Copies of the “Dragon Ball” manga; a giant poster of its main character, Son Goku; a video game adaptation of the series; a balloon depicting Son Goku at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

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