Naoki Urasawa Celebrates Billy Bat's Ending With Unique Video

posted on by Amanda Ellard

Naoki Urasawa's manga series Billy Bat just ended with its 20th volume that went on sale today in Japan. In celebration, Urasawa himself planned a unique one minute short film created in flip-book style using photos of about 600 drawings of the bat done on all different surfaces, including buildings and people.

Urasawa oversaw the whole Billy Bat video, from the initial planning to the character's motions. Beyond just the logistics, he also composed the background music for the short film, recording his own guitar and percussion. Co-author Takashi Nagasaki also makes appearances. The video went up at midnight on September 22 and will stay up until midnight on the 24th. Four large screens at Shibuya's famous scramble crossing near Tokyo's Shibuya station began showing the video late at night on Thursday, and will continue to play it every half hour for 24 hours.

The manga's story is set in 1949, when Japanese-American comic book artist Kevin Yamagata is drawing the popular "Billy Bat" comic. He thinks he might have unconsciously copied the image of Billy Bat from something he saw while serving in occupied Japan, and returns there to get permission from the creator of the image. Upon arriving there, however, he becomes embroiled in a web of murder, cover-ups, and prophecy that all leads back to Billy Bat.

The series began in Kodansha's Morning magazine in 2008 and ended its serialization this past August.

Source: Comic Natalie

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