Emi Motoi Takes Over Keiko Yamamoto’s Role as Yamada in Chibi Maruko-chan Anime
The production team of the anime Chibi Maruko-chan reported on Sunday that the character Shōta Yamada will now be voiced by Emi Motoi. Her performance as Shōta Yamada will debut in the episode scheduled for February 4. Aside from this role, Emi Motoi also lends her voice to the character Himeko Jogasaki in the series.
The previous voice actor for Shōta Yamada, Keiko Yamamoto, left the role after the episode aired on December 17. Yamamoto has been voicing Yamada since January 1990. She also relinquished her role of Hanako Hanazawa in the long-lasting children’s anime series Sazae-san in November. The character of Hanako Hanazawa is now brought to life by Kumiko Watanabe.
In May 2022, Chibi Maruko-chan celebrated the broadcast of its 1,500th episode.
The original manga of Chibi Maruko-chan has led to a successful television anime that persistently ranks as the third most-watched anime series after Sazae-san and Detective Conan. Broadcasting every Sunday at 6:00 p.m. on Fuji TV, followed by Sazae-san at 6:30 p.m., the first anime series of Chibi Maruko-chan was aired from 1990 to 1992, and the continuation of the series began in 1995.
The creator of the manga, Momoko Sakura, passed away from breast cancer at 53 years old in August 2018. Her manga was published in Shueisha‘s Ribon magazine from 1986 to 1996. This comedic manga, which showcases the daily life of a third-grade schoolgirl, has sold around 32.5 million copies. Sakura initiated a four-panel version for a Japanese newspaper in 2007, and it was discontinued in 2011.
The manga of Chibi Maruko-chan continued with new chapters in 2019. The chapters are drawn by Sakura Production, which is composed of former assistants of Sakura. The manga is periodically released in Ribon.