Masaaki Ōsumi (大隅 正秋 Ōsumi Masaaki?, born 1934) is a Japanese director known for his work in television and movie animations.


Ōsumi was born in Hyōgo Prefecture, Japan, and graduated from School of Media Science at the Tokyo University of Technology. He got his start in the entertainment industry as the leader of a puppet theater in Kobe. This led to an association with Tokyo Movie Shinsha, one of the first Japanese animation studios.

In 1969, Ōsumi collaborated with animator Yasuo Ōtsuka in the Moomin TV series, which was an immediate hit. But Finnish author Tove Jansson, creator of the Moomin books, objected strongly to the depiction of the characters in the series. According to Jansson, "My Moomin is No car, No fight, and No money." The series was shifted to another studio after 26 episodes.

Also in 1969, he collaborated with Ōtsuka on the classic Lupin III TV series. This series opened to poor ratings and was cancelled after only 23 episodes. Ōsumi directed the first seven episodes and episodes nine and twelve, with the remaining episodes being directed jointly by Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata.[1] Ōsumi was fired by the studio for refusing to adapt the sophisticated series for a children's audience. He went on to direct film and television animations for a number of other studios, and for the national broadcaster NHK. In 1993, he returned to direct one more Lupin episode, entitled Orders to Assassinate Lupin.

Cowboy Bebop and Lupin III

The director of Cowboy Bebop, Shinichiro Watanabe, revealed during an interview with Newtype Japan that he was heavily influenced by the work of Ōsumi in the first Lupin television series.[2]



Masaaki Ôsumi at the Internet Movie Database


  1. "Lupin III (TV)". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2007-06-29. 
  2. Script error

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