Masashi Kishimoto | Biography 2021
Masashi Kishimoto | Biography 2021

Quick Information

  • Full Name Masashi Kishimoto
  • Nationality Japanese
  • Birthplace Okayama Prefecture, Japan
  • Born Year And Birthday Nov 08, 1974
  • Age 46 Years, 7 Months
Creator of 'Naruto'

Masashi Kishimoto | Biography 2021

Manga Artist

Masashi Kishimoto gained prominence in Japan after his first manga series, 'Naruto' in Japan in 1999. 'Naruto' had sold over forty million copies in Japan before it was released in the United States in 2002. 'Naruto' was about a story of a young orphan named Naruto, who trained to become a ninja, but had many obstacles in his life. He was shunned by his village, faced struggles in school, and was possessed by a vicious demon. Naruto and his classmates, Sasuke and Sakura, later emerged as ninjas and faced challenges from teachers and villains. Its sequel, 'Boruto: Naruto Next Generations,' is currently on air.


Quick Information
  • Full Name Masashi Kishimoto
  • Nationality Japanese
  • Birthplace Okayama Prefecture, Japan
  • Profession Manga Artist
  • Birth Date Nov 08, 1974
  • Age 46 Years, 7 Months

Masashi Kishimoto is a mangaka, known as 'cartoonist' in Japanese, best known for his creation 'Naruto.' 

Who is Masashi Kishimoto?

Masashi Kishimoto is a mangaka, or manga artist, who holds a lot of success worldwide. He debuted with 'Karakuri,' a World War-themed manga for which he won the ' 'Hop Step' Amateur Manga Artist Award.'

In 1997, he released 'Naruto,' a manga short story about a fox spirit disguised as a human. Before 'Naruto,' he worked on 'Mario.' 

Masashi Kishimoto rose to popularity after the publication of his first manga series, Naruto, in Japan in 1999. It aired in 1999 and lasted for 15 years until 2014. Kishimoto also carried out the production for most of the Naruto films and worked to bring the series to a close with Boruto: Naruto the Movie, which included a look into the next generation.

Before beginning a new series for the Weekly Shonen Jump, Kishimoto took a break to create Samurai 8: The Tale of Hachimaru. It aired from May 2019 to March 2020.

Early Life and Education

Masashi Kishimoto was born on 8 November 1974 in Okayama Prefecture, Japan. He has a twin brother, Seishi Kishimoto, who is also a mangaka.

Kishimoto was a manga fanatic since his childhood. He was "fully addicted" to the famous boys' series 'Dragon Ball' when he was in elementary school. Over time his interest grew to follow other manga series, including Katsuhiro Otomo's seminal 'Akira' and so on. Kishimoto clarified that he did poorly in high school as he was too much into his sketches and ranked 30th out of 31 students.

Soon, Kishimoto began to experiment with new styles to create his manga. Though he completed creating one by his eleventh grade, Kishimoto was dissatisfied with his work. His father and brother also didn't like his creation. Despite this, Kishimoto was determined in his efforts and prioritized manga over his studies. He was the second-to-last student in his high school class, with no chance of getting admission to a college. On the other side, he could not create a manga that convinces his family and friends.

According to the Naruto Fan Web site, Kishimoto then found an arts college to attend and continued working towards becoming a manga author hoping "Things will work out."

In 1995, Kishimoto received the ' 'Hop Step' Amateur Manga Artist Award' for a manga named 'Karakuri,' which was about a World War II squadron. It made him continue with this passion that took him to heights in the coming years. 

Early Career

When Kishimoto was in art school, he participated in a contest for aspiring manga artists with his tale 'Karakuri,' and won. In 1997, he released 'Naruto,' a manga short story, which was about a fox spirit disguised as a human (foxes are typical shape-shifters in Japanese folklore). Before 'Naruto,' Kishimoto worked on 'Mario.' 'Mario' was a story of a boy born in the United States. He was half-Japanese and half-Italian and worked as a hitman. One day, he met Saori, a female colleague who refused to speak to men, and he was invited to collaborate with her.

'Naruto'

After his first manga series, 'Naruto,' in Japan in 1999, Masashi Kishimoto gained prominence in the field. 'Naruto' had sold over forty million copies in Japan before it was released in the United States in 2002. 

'Naruto' was about a story of a young orphan named Naruto, who trained to become a ninja, but had many obstacles in his life. He was shunned by his village, faced struggles in school, and was possessed by a vicious demon. Naruto and his classmates, Sasuke and Sakura, later emerged as ninjas and faced challenges from teachers and villains.

Kishimoto created 'Naruto' portraying the image of his childhood, but he designed Naruto's character differently from his original character. He explained, "When Naruto was born, it was more like he somehow came out, rather than my creating him from some inspiration," and continued, "The only image I had in mind was a character who was a naughty boy. I was a poor student, but unlike Naruto, I was the type of poor student who gave up easily and pondered things that weren't worth pondering. I wanted Naruto to be different. He was created based on the self-image of my own childhood, but different from how I really was."

Before taking 'Naruto' outside Japan, Kishimoto expected that people worldwide would know the name Naruto from the spiral fishcake, a ramen ingredient popular in Japan, rather than his ninja boy character. But to his surprise, he was excited to see his 'Naruto' welcomed by people worldwide, especially in North America. 

Kishimoto's modest outlook originated from his early attempts to write a manga for a line of Jump magazines. He clarified that he had tried many times to write a successful manga, experimenting with science fiction to action to sports manga. After a string of failures, as per his editor's advice, Kishimoto gave a final try to create the one-shot manga 'Naruto' that grew into the weekly series people love today.

Kishimoto was initially considered the famous manga artist Eiichiro Oda as his competitor. After Oda also admitted that he too finds Kishimoto as his rival at the back of Volume 72 of 'Naruto,' Kishimoto felt proud and satisfied with his work. 

Oda's 'One Piece' and Kishimoto's 'Naruto' had been running together for a long time in the same Weekly Shonen Jump. At one point in time, both the artists started saying, "I wonder how long our manga series will go on." Finally, Kishimoto announced, "Well, Naruto is going to be ending soon," while 'One Piece' continued. 

In 2021, Steve Aoki's Dim Mak Brand is set to introduce a new Naruto clothing collection in collaboration with VIZ Media, one of the world's most well-known manga and anime distributors. Following the first combination between Dim Mak and 'Naruto' in September 2020, this is the second collaboration with a new set of apparels on display.

After 'Naruto' 

Naruto was a huge hit even on television. It started airing in 1999 and went on for 15 years until 2014. Kishimoto supervised the development of most of the Naruto films and worked to bring the series to a close with Boruto: Naruto the Movie, a film that featured a glimpse into the next generation. 

After the success of 'Naruto,' Weekly Shonen Jump needed a sequel. Though Kishimoto was in charge of the sequel, 'Boruto: Naruto Next Generations,' Ukyo Kodachi started handling the writing part of the series, while Mikio Ikemoto, who assisted Kishimoto in 'Naruto' did the illustration. 

However, Kishimoto took a break before the sequel to produce another new series, 'Samurai 8: The Tale of Hachimaru,' which ran from May 2019 to March 2020. It was a science fiction-samurai manga that follows Hachimaru, a disabled boy who aspires to be a samurai, on his quest to find the seven keys needed to open Pandora's Box.

Kishimoto had planned 'Samurai 8' to last at least 10 volumes, possibly even longer. But, he created only 5 volumes. 'Samurai 8' was not well received and was criticized for pacing, art, and lack of editorial control. Its early cancellation was due to its failure to attract and secure a passionate audience. If 'Samurai 8' was a success, Kishimoto would not have returned to 'Boruto' manga in the near future. 

On the other side, 'Boruto: Naruto Next Generations' is receiving mixed criticism as it couldn't replicate the same performance as 'Naruto' without the artistic input of Kishimoto. People are hopeful that Kishimoto will take the sequel in the right direction giving a promising future to 'Boruto.' 

Personal Life

Kishimoto got married in 2003. As 'Naruto' was in the serialization process when he got married, he could not take his wife on a honeymoon. The couple went on a honeymoon after 'Naruto,' along with their son. 

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