Doraemon is probably the world’s most famous blue cat.
Spanning generations as a cultural symbol, beloved character and popular image of Japanese childhood, Doremon— a blue robot cat from the future— was created 50 years ago by Fujiko Fujio, the pen name of manga duo Hiroshi Fujimoto (1933-96) and Motoo Abiko.
“Fifty years on, Doraemon is still alive and kicking. I’m grateful,” said Zensho Ito, president of Fujiko Pro Co.
To celebrate the milestone anniversary, a large marionette clock of Doraemon was unveiled at Tokyo’s Odaiba waterfront district. At certain times of the day, the clock plays the theme song of the Doraemon TV animation.
Additionally, the first official Doraemon store will open at DiverCity Tokyo Plaza.
Dorarmon is more than just an educational manga character and anime show; it is a pop-culture brand that is celebrated throughout Japan. Movies centering on the round little cat have surpassed blockbusters like 2015’s “Godzilla,” one of Japan’s most profitable franchises.
Parents who grew up with Doraemon now introduce their own children to the character, truly advancing the generation-spanning franchise. Even the young cartoon-watching generation of North America have come to know Doraemon when Disney acquired the rights to the U.S. localization of the anime in 2014.
Happy anniversary Doraemon!