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Writer F.J. DeSanto Talks with CBR About Reinventing ‘Cyborg 009′ for a Western Audience

Writer F.J. DeSanto (Immortals: Gods and Heroes) spoke with Comic Book Resources writer and editor Kiel Phegley about the upcoming Archaia graphic novel based on Cyborg 009, the classic manga created in the 1960s by Shotaro Ishinomori.

Illustration by Marcus To

CBR News: “Cyborg 009″ is a classic manga and anime that’s come to America at a few odd times, most recently in comics when Tokyopop printed English editions of the first ten volumes. What was it that initially made you connect up with the series?

F.J. DeSanto: I think I just always inherently knew it. It’s weird. Growing up in New York, I always had access to manga and anime whether it was “Gatchaman” or “Macross” or “Space Battleship Yamato.” So I just sort of knew “Cyborg 009.” I even had books in Japanese from it years ago and had seen some of the cartoons, but I never really knew the whole story until those Tokyopop books came out. By then I was already interested.

This all part of building the brand over here, which is what I’ve been tasked to do. We want to make sure people have access to that material. I’m not even sure if I have all that Tokyopop manga because it fell out of print. And I think they only did ten volumes, and there’s at least a couple of dozen volumes beyond those ten. I was just in Tokyo the other week meeting with the Ishimori group, and I went to the bookstore – a wonderful manga store I’d passed – where I ended up buying volumes of the old material that I had never seen before. I just wanted to know what it was all about.

You can read the rest of the very informative interview here. The Cyborg 009 graphic novel, written by F. J. DeSanto and Bradley Cramp, and illustrated by Marcus To, will debut summer 2013.