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Ken Akamatsu (赤松 健, Akamatsu Ken, July 5, 1968) is a Japanese manga artist from Tokyo.
Sailor Moon was his introduction to anime and manga fandom.
In his teens, Akamatsu applied himself to Film Study (it is speculated that this is where he got the idea for Love Hina). Eventually, he became famous as an illustrator at the Comiket (a comic convention held bi-annually in Japan). He used the pen name Awa Mizuno (水野 亜和, Mizuno Awa). Akamatsu, still in college (Japanese literature course at Chuo University), then proceeded to win the Weekly Shōnen Magazine award twice. Soon after he graduated, his Hito Natsu no Kids Game was awarded the coveted 50th Shōnen Magazine's Rookie Award.
After a big hit with A.I. Love You, he finally made a grand success with his new and magnum opus manga, Love Hina. The series appeared in Weekly Shōnen Magazine and has been collected in eleven volumes (with fourteen volumes in total), which have sold over 6 million copies in Japan, and received the Kodansha Manga Award for shōnen in 2001. Akamatsu had added elements of his own life experiences to the story, and this was said to have induced a unique feeling to the manga especially for Western readers, whose lack of familiarity with Japanese culture for the most part added to the effect. The series, published in America in 2002, was especially well received in many overseas countries - Akamatsu was surprised that even foreign readers found Love Hina to be "cute" and to their liking. Akamatsu appears as a character in the 'Love Hina' anime, in episode 14, and the Christmas and Spring specials.
He is married to 'Kanon' Akamatsu, who was previously a singer/idol. He has just ended his latest manga series, Negima!: Magister Negi Magi, which was his longest running manga so far with 355 chapters, which, like Love Hina, has also been made into an anime series. A second independent retelling of Negima was made called Negima!?. The first anime adaption was produced by XEBEC, and the second retelling produced by Shaft. Shaft also produces all of the OVAs for Negima! Magister Negi Magi and is currently making a new Negima! OVA, Negima! Magister Negi Magi ~Shiroki Tsubasa Ala Alba~, and a newer series of OVAs, Maho Sensei Negima! Mo Hitotsu no Sekai ~Another World~
Along with working on the Negima manga, he was also helping with the live action Negima! series. He has no task-based daily schedule for his manga work; instead he works on one page at a time until the whole chapter is finished. When he was younger he could draw one chapter each week, but nowadays he usually draws 18 pages every 9 days. Thus, he has time to take a week-long break on four-week intervals while maintaining his weekly publishing schedule.
In November 2010, he announced he is starting a free manga download site for out-of-print titles called J-Comi, and has announced all 14 volumes of Love Hina will be its first release. The service is completely free and without any time restrictions or commissions, with authors receiving payment based on site ads. The comics will be distributed as PDFs without any type of DRM. He also expects other manga artists to take advantage of the service.
Recently, he has started a new manga, UQ Holder!, in Weekly Shōnen Magazine; which debuted in the 38th issue on August 28.
Itsudatte My Santa! (いつだってMyサンタ!),
A.I. Love You (A・Iが止まらない!, A・I ga Tomaranai),
Love Hina (ラブひな),
Negima!: Magister Negi Magi (魔法先生ネギま!, Mahou Sensei Negima),
Hito Natsu no Kids Game (ひと夏のKIDSゲーム),
Mao Chan (陸上防衛隊まおちゃん, Rikujou Boueitai Mao-chan),
UQ Holder! (ユーキュー ホルダー, Yūkyū Horudā),
Hayate the Combat Butler! Heaven Is a Place on Earth (movie, special thanks to),
Love Hina (story; also voiced himself in two special episodes),
Negima!: Magister Negi Magi (story),
Ground Defense Force! Mao-chan (story, character designs),
Itsudatte My Santa! (story),
Uta Kata (ending illustrator, episode 11)