What are they working on now?

Lots o' manga
Lots o’ manga

Have you ever wondered what project an artist is working on after they finish a successful manga series? Here’s a sampling of what Hiromu Arakawa, Hiroyuki Takei, Takeshi Obata and Rumiko Takahashi have been up to recently.

Hiromu Arakawa

Hiromu Arakawa perhaps is best known for adventures surrounding two brothers working to fix their bodies and save the world in Fullmetal Alchemist. Right now, she’s working on a new title, Silver Spoon, which revolves around an academic prodigy named Yugo Hachiken who takes winds up taking classes at an agricultural school to prove that he can be top of any subject he chooses. After learning that farming is far a tougher field than what he’s normally used to, Yugo begins making friends and a name for himself as he looks to discover what he wants do with the rest of his life.

Silver Spoon has been serialized in Weekly Shōnen Sunday since May of 2011.

Hiroyuki Takei

Since working on Shaman King in the late 1990s, Hiroyuki Takei has produced a handful of new stories. Jumbor Barutronica is set in the year 3002 during a time of war and destruction. While trying to protect his construction team from a rival group, Baru Craw is killed during work on restructuring a tunnel. However, death does not come easily as Baru is revived in the body of a partially mechanized five year old. Striving to rebuild his lost home, Baru manages to amass a new crew and work toward his goal.

Jumbor Barutronica ran in Weekly Shōnen Jump from January 2007 until April 2007.

Takei has since joined forces with American comic legend Stan Lee to create a new series called Ultimo. Two robots: Ultimo, symbolizing good and Vice, symbolizing evil, were unleashed to the world a thousand years prior. It was all part of a project devised by Dr. Dunstan to see who would triumph over the last world war; one of them appears in the sky over a city west of Tokyo.

A reborn bandit from Japan’s Heian era, Yamato Agari encounters the first robot – Ultimo. Not long after, Vice appears. More and more robots, both good and evil, start emerging and battling each other. Using Ultimo’s powers, Yamato struggles to prevent the prevent the apocolypse by turning back time.

Since March 2009, Ultimo has appeared in Japan’s Jump Square and North America’s Shonen Jump magazines

Takeshi Obata

Takeshi Obata has collaborated with many other manga illustrators and writers. Well known for his work with Tsugumi Ohba on Death Note and Yumi Hotta on Hikaru no Go, Obata has again partnered up with Ohba to work on a new series: Bakuman.

When Moritaka Mashiro forgets to take his notebook with him after class, another student, Akito Takagi discovers the drawings within its covers. Takagi tries to persuade Mashiro to become a manga artist, but the offer is declined due to the recent passing of  his uncle who was an artist as well. After being convinced by his school mate to meet with his crush, Miho Azuki, Mashiro eventually reveals that both himself and Takagi aspire at becoming famous manga artists while Azuki becomes a voice actor. Together, the friends submit comics to one of Japan’s largest magazines: Weekly Shōnen Jump

Bakuman has been published in Japan through Weekly Shōnen Jump and in North America’s Shonen Jump magazines.

Rumiko Takahashi

Rumiko Takahashi has penned a fews series that have been recognized around the world not only in print, but on screen; namely Ranma ½ and InuYasha. Now, Takahashi’s latest project is a new manga named Rin-ne. During childhood, Sakura Mamiya was abducted by otherworldly spirits and returns the ability to see them, but remembers nothing that happening. Now in high school, Sakura tries to remove this power, only to encounter another classmate Rinne Rokudo, who just so happens to be a shinigami. It turns out that Rinne’s job is to help guide lost souls towards towards reincarnation, although there’s something more that brings the two together.

Rin-ne has appeared in Weekly Shōnen Sunday since April of 2009.

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