An Astro Boy manga page by the late creator Osamu Tezuka sold for a record 269,400 euros (about US$320,000) at an auction in Paris on Saturday. The page was expected to sell for only 40,000 to 60,000 euros (about US$48,000 to US$72,000).

The Chinese ink and watercolor illustration, which features Astro Boy in a fight, is 35 centimeters long by 25 centimeters wide. Manga featuring the finished page was originally published in Kobunsha‘s Shonen magazine between 1956 and 1957.

Eric Leroy, a comic expert at the auction house Artcurial, said that the sale was “a world record for this artist whose works are few in the market.” He added that the buyer was a β€œEuropean collector who had been dreaming for a long time” of buying the page.

Tezuka’s original Astro Boy manga ran in Shonen from 1952 to 1968. The series inspired various spinoff manga and anime adaptations. The 1963 anime was one of Japan’s first animated television series. A professor found an unused 36-page scenario for an unaired first episode of the landmark show last November. The Atom The Beginning anime, the franchise’s most recent adaptation inspired by Tetsuro Kasahara‘s prequel manga, premiered in April 2017.

The family of late rakugo actor Katsura Harudanji III discovered nine illustrations by Tezuka in his student days last year. Shinchosha‘s Shinchō literary magazine published previously unrevealed erotic illustrations by Tezuka in 2016.

Thanks to Lester Yung for the tip.

Source: The Japan Times