Sailor Moon (美少女戦士セーラームーン Bishōjo Senshi Sērā Mūn, originally translated as Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon and later as Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon) is a Japanese shōjo manga series written and illustrated by Naoko Takeuchi. It was originally serialized in Nakayoshi from 1991 to 1997; the 60 individual chapters were published in 18 tankōbon volumes. The series follows the adventures of a schoolgirl named Usagi Tsukino as she transforms into Sailor Moon to search for a magical artifact, the “Legendary Silver Crystal” (「幻の銀水晶」 Maboroshi no Ginzuishō, lit. “Phantom Silver Crystal”). She leads a diverse group of comrades, the Sailor Soldiers (セーラー戦士 Sērā Senshi) (Sailor Guardians in later editions) as they battle against villains to prevent the theft of the Silver Crystal and the destruction of the Solar System.
The manga was adapted into an anime series produced by Toei Animation and broadcast in Japan from 1992 to 1997. Toei also developed three animated feature films, a television special, and three short films based on the anime. A live-action television adaptation, Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, aired from 2003 to 2004, and a second anime series, Sailor Moon Crystal, began simulcasting in 2014. The manga series was licensed for an English language release by Kodansha Comics in North America, and in Australia and New Zealand by Random House Australia. The entire anime series has been licensed by Viz Media for an English language release in North America and by Madman Entertainment in Australia and New Zealand.
Since its release, Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon has received acclaim, with praise for its art, characterization, and humor. The manga has sold over 35 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling shōjo manga series. The franchise has also generated $13 billion in worldwide merchandise sales.