The latest addition to our “Translations” archive comes to us from new site contributor Stacey at the recommendation of JakIchanDB on Twitter: a February 2018 interview with Kazuhiko Torishima on Asahi’s website.
In the interview, Torishima — the man responsible for discovering Akira Toriyama and serving as his initial editor — discusses his early days of employment with Shueisha, changing the editorial department from the inside-out and outside-in at the same time, launching V-Jump, returning to serve as the editor-in-chief of Weekly Shōnen Jump, and looking to the future of Jump:
And so, I endeavored to not associate with other people from the editorial department (laughs). I was in charge of Akira Toriyama’s series Dr. Slump, and around the time it started to become a hit, I heard from Monthly Playboy (also published by Shueisha) that they wanted to cover the series. The article writer’s name was Akira Sakuma, who would later put out Momotarō Dentetsu. I became close with Mr. Sakuma, and through that connection I became acquainted with Yūji Horii of Dragon Quest; this was how I proactively recruited outside writers to work on the magazine. Thus, things like the reader submission section called “Jump Broadcasting Office”, and “Famicom Shinken”, which featured introductory articles for video games, were created. At first, I faced backlash from my colleagues for using people outside of the organization. They’d say, “You can’t do that; our survey results will get leaked.” In the end, we were only able to complete these projects under the condition that they worked in a conference room and never set foot in the editorial department. The dissenting voices died down after these segments started ranking high in the surveys, but I still heard people talking behind my back, saying I was wasting energy by focusing on things besides manga, and that our efforts were trivial.
This interview has been archived in our “Translations” section, and is a wonderful complement to Ollie Barder’s 2016 interview with Torishima on Forbes.