Media only: Deborah Galyan 202.633.0504; Elizabeth Bridgforth (202) 633-0521

WHAT: Tezuka Family Weekend: A free public celebration of anime artist Osamu Tezuka featuring live performances, workshops, screenings and tours

WHEN: Dec. 4 – 6

WHERE: Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, 12th and Jefferson Drive S.W.

WHO: Kamishibai artist Yassan performs Tezuka tales

Osamu Tezuka (1928-1989), one of the most influential artists in the anime genre, created hundreds of manga comic books as well as dozens of films and television episodes.

Weekend highlights include kamishibai(paper dramas) performances popularized in Japan in the early 20th century by traveling artists who bicycled from town to town, dazzling children and adults with exciting tales illustrated with colorful pictures. Traveling kamishibai artist Yassan performs “The Golden Bat,” an Astro Boy story, and a tale inspired by an incident from Tezuka’s childhood.

Uniquely crafted family tours for all ages offer kids and adults the opportunity to “step into” a scene painted on a Japanese screen to explore its stories.

The film The Fantastic Adventures of Unico tells the story of a little unicorn born with the power to make anyone he meets happy. Episodes from Tezuka’s television series’ Princess Knight, Marvelous Melmo and The Three-Eyed One will be shown.

For complete events and detailed schedule information, visit

This retrospective is supported by the Toshiba International Foundation.

Above: Still from The Fantastic Adventures of Unico