Horror manga icon Kazuo Umezu (sometimes attributed as Kazu Umezz) is working on a new manga series to debut in January 2022. The 84-year-old writer/artist retired from comics in 1995 after finishing his sci-fi manga Fourteen and is best known for the horror series The Drifting Classroom, Cat-Eyed Boy, and Orochi: Blood.
"What!!! This is the first new release in 26 years!!! It took four years to produce," Umezu writes on his website, as translated from Japanese by Google Translate. "Today is the first time I have made a public announcement because I drew it silently. It's a great work, and at first glance you can't escape!!!"
At the bottom of the announcement, a joint copyright of Umezu and Japanese publisher Shogakukan is listed, which seems to indicate Shogakukan is publishing Umezu's return to manga. There's been no announcement about an English edition, however, Shogakukan is a partial owner of the English-language manga publisher Viz.
Umezu has kept busy during his retirement from comics, with projects such as a 2014 autobiographical film he directed called Mother. In 2019, the Japanese government awarded Umezu with its 'Commissioner for Cultural Affairs' award to honor "individuals who have made distinguished accomplishment in artistic and cultural activities."
Several of Umezu's manga including The Drifting Classroom, Cat-Eyed Boy, Orochi: Blood, Makoto-chan, and God's Left Hand, Devil's Right Hand have been adapted into live-action and animated films.
Two of Umezu's horror manga are on our list of best horror comics.