Japanese anime Akira still relevant 30 years on

The 1988 cyberpunk anime inspired a generation of works, including a Kanye West music video and TV series Stranger Things

Katsuhiro Otomo’s drawings for Akira were distinctive for their realism.
Katsuhiro Otomo’s drawings for Akira were distinctive for their realism.PHOTO: AKIRA COMMITTEE

WASHINGTON • There is a reason a Japanese animated film from 30 years ago still has resonance in the United States today.

Long before the Marvel cinematic universe gave the clearance for niche pop culture properties to enter the mainstream, Katsuhiro Otomo's Akira served as an entry point for Westerners into the world of Japanese animation.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 18, 2018, with the headline 'Japanese anime Akira still relevant 30 years on'. Subscribe