Legendary and recently retired anime director Hayao Miyazaki and celebrated manga artist Rumiko Takahashi are nominated for induction into the Will Eisner Comic Awards Hall of Fame for their contribution to the comic book world. This honor is considered the Oscars of the comic book and graphic novel world, and is the most prestigious honor for the field.
The nominations were announced on Wednesday by the organizers of the San Diego Comic Con, the world’s biggest convention for pop culture events, particularly comic books. There are fourteen nominees this year, and the U.S. comic professionals, artists and other industry insiders will be voting and choosing four from among them this coming July during the Comic Con. Three artists have already been inducted this year, including The Flash comic artist Irwin Hasen, Sheldon Moldoff, one of the earliest Batman artists, and Orrin C. Evans, an African-American comics pioneer.
Miyazaki has been widely acclaimed as one of the, if not the best anime directors, with films like My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away, and Howl’s Moving Castle. He recently announced his retirement from feature-length filmmaking, but is still involved with animation house Studio Ghibli, which he co-founded. Takahashi is considered a pioneer of Japanese manga in the U.S., with her works Urusei Yatsura, Ranma ½ and Inuyasha.
In the past, there have been several Japanese inductees in the Eisner Hall of Fame: Osamu Tezuka (Kimba the White Lion), Kazuo Koike (Crying Freeman), Goseki Kojima (Lone Wolf and Cub) and Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira), among others. The San Diego Comic Con will be taking place from July 24-27 this year at the San Diego Convention Center.
[ via Asahi Shimbun ]