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Now unmistakable with his cape, deerstalker hat and pipe, Sherlock Holmes debuted in 1887’s “A Study in Scarlet,” the first of 60 books and short stories by the British writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in which he appeared.

In Japan, few contemporary artists are better-known than the 58-year-old playwright, screenwriter and director Koki Mitani, who recently declared that he’s been a fan of the self-styled “consulting detective” since he was in elementary school.

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