Who is Naoko Takeuchi?
Naoko Takeuchi is a renowned manga artist, most famous for creating the manga series ‘Sailor Moon’. One of the most popular manga comics of all time, ‘Sailor Moon’ has become a pop-culture phenomenon. Some of the most popular TV series based on the manga are ‘Sailor Moon Crystal’ and ‘Sailor Moon’ etc. It has also inspired the live-action movies ‘Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon: The Movie’ and ‘Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon: Special Act.’ Although she started off as a creator of short manga comics Naoko transitioned to serialized comics with ‘Maria’. Since then, Naoko Takeuchi has gone on to create some of the most beloved manga comics of all time. These include ‘The Cherry Project’, ‘Codename Sailor V’, ‘Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon’, and ‘Toki☆Meca!’ to name a few. In addition to that, she has also written the lyrics for some of the most popular anime songs. These include, “Gekko (Moon Rainbow)”, “Rashiku’ Ikimasho”, “I am Sêrâ Mûn”, and “Purinsesu Mûn”, etc.
Childhood & Early Life
Naoko Takeuchi was born in Kofu, Yamanashi, Japan, on March 15, 1967. Her parents are Kenji and Ikuko Takeuchi. She has a younger brother named Shingo.
She completed her early education from the ‘Kofu Ichi High School’. During her school years, she was part of the astronomy club and the manga clubs. She would also often wear sailor suit uniforms. Her experiences later served as an inspiration for the ‘Sailor Moon’.
She wanted to be a professional manga artist from an early age. However, just in case it didn’t work out, Naoko also earned her degree in Chemistry from the ‘Kyoritsu University of Pharmacy’. She became a licensed pharmacist.
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Early in her life, she was a “miko” or shrine maiden at the ‘Shiba Daijingu’ shrine. Naoko Takeuchi started her career as a manga artist at the age of 19, when her work ‘Love Call’ (1986) was selected by ‘Kodansha Ltd.’. She then continued to work on one-shot pieces and gained experience.
Her first major work was ‘Chocolate Christmas’ (1987 – 1988). The manga was about a girl falling in love with a DJ during Christmas. She followed that up ‘Maria’ (1989 – 1990).
From 1990 until 1991, she wrote ‘The Cherry Project’. In 1991, Takeuchi created ‘Codename Sailor V’. It depicted the adventures of a costumed magical protagonist Minako Aino, or Sailor V. It was released in three volumes until 1997. The popularity of the series and character also became an inspiration for the creation of ‘Sailor Moon’.
From 1992 until 1997, Naoko Takeuchi gained international fame for her creation of ‘Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon’. The iconic manga captures the story of Usagi Tsukino, a reincarnated celestial heroine.
‘Sailor Moon’ renewed interest in manga culture. It also inspired a series of animated works. It’s first on-screen adaptation was ‘Sailor Moon R: The Movie: The Promise of the Rose’ (1993). That was followed by ‘Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon S: Usagi - Ai no senshi e no michi’ (1994).
In 1995, ‘Sailor Moon’ was adapted into the animated movies ‘Bishôjo senshi Sailor Moon Super S Special’, ‘Sailor Moon SuperS: The Movie: Black Dream Hole’, etc. But it’s most popular adaptation was the animated manga series ‘Sailor Moon’ or ‘Bishôjo senshi Sêrâ Mûn’ (1992 – 1997).
Another series ‘Sailor Moon’ (1995 – 2000) also gained massive popularity. In 1997, Takeuchi created the manga ‘PQ Angels’. However, it was discontinued after four chapters, as publishers ‘Kodansha Ltd.’ lost many pages of the manuscript.
Some of Naoko Takeuchi’s other notable manga works have been, ‘Prism Time’ (1996 – 1997), ‘Princess Naoko Takeuchi's Return-to-Society Punch!!’ (1998 – 2004) and ‘Toki☆Meca)!’ (2006).
In 2003, ‘Sailor Moon’ was made into the live-action series, ‘Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon’. It was followed by the live-action movie ‘Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon: Special Act.’ (2004).
In 2014, the live-action, ‘Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon: The Movie’ was a hit. From 2014 to 2016, Naoki Takeuchi was involved with the animated series ‘Sailor Moon Crystal’. Her latest project is the upcoming manga movie ‘Sailor Moon Eternal’ (2020).
Naoko Takeuchi is best-known as the creator of the manga comics ‘Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon’ (1992 – 1997). It has become a cultural phenomenon, giving rise to multiple anime series like ‘Sailor Moon’ (1992 – 1997), (1995 – 2000), ‘Sailor Moon Crystal’ (2014 – 2016), etc. It has also generated millions in merchandise sales, movies, games, etc.
Awards & Achievements
Takeuchi was awarded the ‘2nd Nakayoshi Comic Prize for Newcomers’ in 1985 for ‘Yume Ja Nai no Ne’. ‘Love Call’ also won her ‘Nakayoshi’s New Artist Award’.
In 1993, Naoko was awarded the prestigious ‘Kodansha Manga Award’ for ‘Sailor Moon’ in the Shōjo category.
Family & Personal Life
Naoko Takeuchi met manga creator Yoshihiro Togashi at a ‘Weekly Shōnen Jump’ meeting. The two fell in love and got married on January 6, 1999. The couple has two children together, a son (born January 2001) and a daughter (born 2009).