I and Ms. Sumiyoshi Miki had a conversation with the manga artist Takehiko Inoue for "The Professionals" program broadcast by NHK. The conversation, together with the documentary films, will be broadcast on the 15th September on NHK general.
Mr. Inoue stuck me as a fundamentally honest person. Mr. Inoue said that his works are in a sense mirrors which reflect his true self. He said that one needs to get free from self-delusions and pretensions, in order to reach the true roots within oneself. Once the root of one's spirit is reached, one finds there what is universally human. This self-digging of the soul is a necessary process for the creation of works which are at once high quality and popular.
One needs to be courageous to come face to face with the true root of the self. Self-delusion is such a sweet poison. But the courage finally is rewarding.
Mr. Inoue's manga books (notably "Slam Dunk" and "Vagabond") have sold nearly two hundred million copies in Japan alone.