|This article is about a/an producer in the Kamen Rider Series.|
Tohru Hirayama (平山 亨 Hirayama Tōru) was the producer of Kamen Rider Series, starting at its very beginning.
In 1969, Shotaro Ishinomori, who was not yet a known face in Tokusatsu industry at the time, was approached by Hirayama to have his Skull Man manga adapted for the Masked Hero Project. Originally the project was rejected due to criticisms that it was too violent for the timeslot it was given.
After the duo reworked the story and designs, the final Kamen Rider design, a Grasshopper, was chosen by Ishinomori's son. This drawing would go on to become the original Kamen Rider 1, after some modification. The hero Takeshi Hongo, portrayed by actor and stuntman Hiroshi Fujioka, was described as a transformed human (改造人間 kaizō ningen), or cyborg. Eventually, Kamen Rider, the original series, premiered on April 3, 1971.
On July 31, 2013, Hirayama passed away from heart failure at the age of 84. Alongside Takao Nagaishi, who also passed away in 2013, Hirayama received a commemorative message in the credits of Heisei Rider vs. Showa Rider: Kamen Rider Taisen feat. Super Sentai (2014), dedicating the film in memory of them both.