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1934- . Born in Fukushima Prefecture, Yabuki graduated from Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music in 1958 and found work with Toei's Kyoto studios as an assistant director in live-action. Transferring to Toei Animation in 1962, his anime directorial debut was on Ken the Wolf Boy, and his breakthrough work was on Puss in Boots. He moved to Toei's advertising division in 1970, officially leaving anime behind, although he subsequently went freelance in 1973, returning to the anime world to work on such titles as Calimero.