Kazunori Mizuno, a 52-year-old veteran artist and storyboard art director who has worked on a number of famous titles such as Bleach and Naruto, passed away on March 19.
News of the animator’s death. however, did not reach the public until his colleagues took to Twitter and posted news about his passing. While the official cause of death still remains a mystery, many believe that Mizuno died after “karoushi,” or overworking in Japan.
Kazunori Mizuno has passed away. He has been working in the industry for about 30 years and is known for directing the better episodes of.. pic.twitter.com/omkqR4LNkl
— DarkNora (@dark_nora) April 6, 2017
Mizuno was among the top members of the industry and served diligently for 30 years. While many may not be familiar with Mizuno, they are certainly familiar with his incredible work on many famous anime titles such as Akira, Naruto Shippuden, Bleach, Yu Yu Hakusho, and many others.
According to a Twitter post by one of Mizuno’s colleagues, Kazuyoshi Yaginuma, Mizuno expressed feelings of discomfort and excused himself from working to take a break. Unfortunately, he passed away some time later while napping at the Pierrot animation studios in Tokyo.
— 柳沼和良 (@yaginuma_san) April 6, 2017
A few of his colleagues mourned his death and offered a bit of insight on how he may have passed.
Apparently a case of overworking. Decided to take a nap at the studio and passed away. Sad reality of this industry.
— リボレクさん (@liborek3) April 6, 2017
— そのえ (@karin_sonoe) March 21, 2017
Check out some of Mizuno’s work in these videos below!