Founded in 1997 by entrepreneur and filmmaker Stu Levy, TOKYOPOP established the market for manga in North America, introducing the term to the English language in the process. Over its history, TOKYOPOP has published over 3000 books, distributed anime and Asian films on home video and television, licensed merchandise to consumer goods companies, created graphic novels of major brands and led the way digitally in social media, e-commerce and user-generated content.
TOKYOPOP’s brand expanded internationally with offices in Europe and Japan and a network of over 160 partners in more than 50 countries and 30 languages. Through TOKYOPOP, Stu has produced live-action and animated film and television content based on its extensive intellectual property library, including Priest, America’s Greatest Otaku, Van Von Hunter, and a slate of projects currently in development.
Although the road has been rocky for TOKYOPOP of late, you can’t keep a good Robofish down. The company is in the process of reincarnation, with a focus on digital media and Asian pop culture. Stay tuned – the future awaits!
About Stu Levy:
A native of the greater Los Angeles area, Stu grew up adjacent to the media industry that would later factor strongly in his life. He went to UCLA and graduated with a BA in Economics/Business, then attended Georgetown University to earn his Juris Doctor. However, a summer studying in Japan completely altered his career plans. He fell in love with Japanese culture and decided to learn the language, which he now speaks and writes fluently. Stu’s early career focused on emerging media including digital publishing, online entertainment and video games.
Stu is a writer, an artist, a musician, a producer and director of film and TV, and an entrepreneur. He has done both narrative and documentary filmmaking, most recently the independent non-profit documentary feature film Pray For Japan, about the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami. He is currently developing a number of upcoming projects.
Stu chairs the International Committee of the Producers’ Guild of America and heads-up their YouTube channel and the annual PGA Producers Showcase (ProShow). As a hobby, he has run multiple marathons, the last clocking in at a time that qualifies him for the Boston Marathon. He is considering the admittedly insane challenge of full Ironman, after having completed a half-Iron triathlon with Navy SEALs in Coronado in 2012.
Team TOKYOPOP.com is:
- Producer — Stu Levy
- Design and build-out — Skamfu
- Maintenance — Michelle “Ms. Geek” Klein-Hass