French manga Radiant to be adapted by Japan’s NHK

Japanese public broadcaster NHK is producing an anime series based on French manga artist Tony Valente’s Radiant, published by France’s Ankama Editions.

NHK is planning to broadcast the series from October 2018. “We are extremely proud to have found writers as talented as Tony and to be with him during this incredible project,” said Ankama CEO Anthony Roux.

Radiant is the first French hardcover manga to be published in Japan in 2015 by EuroManga. Set against the backdrop of a coming-of-age quest, the series combines influences from European fairy tales, political events, the author’s own life and Japanese manga, in particular the best-selling One Piece series.

Hiro Mashima, author of popular Japanese manga Fairy Tail, said of Radiant: “This work is surprisingly reminiscent of Japanese mangas. However, it also has typically European traits, with a story that has an ever so slightly bitter taste.”

Born in Toulouse in 1984, Valente made his graphic novel debut in 2004 with The Four Princes Of Ganahan, published by Delcourt. He then wrote a solo series, Hana Attori, before starting S.P.E.E.D. Angels, both of which were published by Soleil.

French manga has a long history – NHK previously broadcast French-Japanese anime series The Mysterious Cities Of Gold, co-produced by DIC Entertainment and Studio Pierrot, back in the 1980s.

Ankama is also known for the animated series DOFUS and WAKFU, part of a universe called the Krosmoz, which was depicted in a full-length feature film in 2016, DOFUS – Book I: Julith. The company also creates board games, figurines and video games.