Keanu Reeves and Quentin Tarantino Have a Bigger Hand in Influencing Kagurabachi Than Fans Realize

The most popular manga of 2023, Kagurabachi, recently celebrated the release of the second volume of the series on May 2. Takeru Hokazono, the creator of the series, started Kagurabachi in September last year, and the first volume was released in February 2024, making quite a name for itself. With only one volume, the Kagurabachi broke multiple records.
Kagurabachi Manga coverKagurabachi Manga cover

Hokazono was recently interviewed by Asahi Digital to celebrate the release of the second volume of Kagurabachi. In the interview, the mangaka revealed that John Wick and Quentin Tarantino were his inspirations behind Kagurabachi. He also listed a bunch of other directors who have been his favorites and, in one way or another, helped him with Kagurabachi.

Not only that, the creator also revealed how other major series that he has been watching since the beginning became the reason why he entered the manga industry and created one of the most influential manga of 2023.

Takeru Hokazono Loves Marvel and Masashi Kishimoto’s Naruto
Hokazono’s interview with Asahi Digital was translated and shared by @soukatsu_ on X(Formerly Twitter). During the interview, Hokazono confessed to his love for Marvel movies and Naruto by popular mangaka Masashi Kishimoto. He revealed that both franchises have had a huge impact on him.

Hokazono stated:

“I’ve always loved Marvel hero movies because they’re cool and exciting. Those first impressions have always left a strong impression on me. I’ve been exposed to Marvel and NARUTO and some other works for so long, it feels like I’ve been completely absorbed-I’ve never thought about what exactly makes them good. It’s like they’re in my blood and have become a part of who I am.”

A manga panel from Kagurabachi starring the protagonistA manga panel from Kagurabachi
He pointed out that he has been exposed to Marvel movies and Naruto for so long that he can’t even think about what makes them so good. They have become a part of his identity and indirectly helped him in creating his works, especially the story of Chihiro Rokuhira in Kagurabachi.

Keanu Reeves and Quentin Tarantino Inspired Kagurabachi
As Hokazono discussed various cultures and films that influenced him, the mangaka disclosed that the storyline of Kagurabachi was most greatly impacted by the film series John Wick, featuring Keanu Reeves, and also by his favorite director, Quentin Tarantino. Hokazono revealed that he mostly watches Western movies, and one of his favorite directors is Tarantino.
Kagurabachi celebrates massive debut with special trailerKagurabachi
Hokazono explained:

“Kagurabachi was probably more influenced by films like John Wick, which I watched after creating Enten. I watch mostly Western movies and my favorite directors are Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, and Christopher Nolan. I think my use of slow-mo and frame division to emphasize speed is probably Tarantino’s influence.”

The mangaka also revealed that the frame division and slow-mo in the storyline of Kagurabachi are inspired by Tarantino. Hokazono has created a manga that has had a huge impact on the industry with just the first volume. Kagurabachi still has a lot of plot points to cover, and if it follows the same route, it might dethrone other great mangas like One Piece, Jujutsu Kaisen, etc.


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