Arsène Lupin III, commonly known as Lupin III, is the titular main protagonist of the manga and anime series of the same name, and of Hayao Miyazaki's first feature film, The Castle of Cagliostro.
From 1971 to 1995 (Part 1 to Part 3), he was voiced by the late Yasuo Yamada until his death in 1995. Following Yamada's passing, the role of Lupin was given to Kanichi Kurita, who then lend his voice from 1995 onward.
Unlike the Japanese dubs, the English dub (from Part 2 to Part 5) had several voice actors play the role of Lupin throughout the years.
- From 1992 to 1995 (Part 2 only), he was voiced by Bob Bergen.
- From 2002 to 2013, he was voiced by Sonny Strait. The actor also voiced Lupin for the English dub of The Woman Called Fujiko Mine.
- From 2017 to 2018, he was voiced by Tony Oliver. Oliver later reprised his role for the English version of the fifth anime.
In Monkey Punch's original manga, Lupin is cocky, quite crude, and for the most part remorseless. He is very much the ladies' man, often using them for his own gains, but is not beyond forcing himself upon women who resist him. This is in stark contrast to his better-known anime self, who despite being a skilled thief, comes off as a goofball and will go to great lengths to right injustice, who also shows a chivalrous streak that compels him to help those less fortunate than he. Furthermore, Lupin often takes it upon himself and his gang to stop criminals engaged in more violent crimes and leave them for Zenigata to arrest. In the anime, while he fancies himself a ladies' man, his actual success with women is erratic, which fluctuates from writer to writer.
Even though his gang's loyalty has been an issue, with Fujiko willing to betray and cohort Goemon promising to eventually kill him, Lupin will still drop everything to come to their aid in a helpless moment; further the team would rather face torture than to betray Lupin (or he betray them) to a third party. Curiously, this rule of loyalty extends also to Inspector Zenigata, who Lupin considers a respected friend and opposition. The Inspector reciprocates this regard and out of gratitude has vowed never to attempt to kill Lupin. Lupin's vendetta against the Tarantula Gang in Memory of the Walther P-38 was partly settling of past betrayal and mostly vengeful payback for their shooting and nearly killing Zenigata.
Lupin is shown to steal more than actually having the treasure he sought. He relishes more in the challenge of stealing and, as long as he succeeds in the heist, is usually not that upset when he ends up empty-handed; there have been times he has lost the object or intentionally thrown it away. There have also been times when Lupin stole an object only to give it to someone else, such as if it rightfully belonged to them or they needed it more than he did.
- Lupin has historically described himself as of mixed heritage, Japanese and French.
- His first name, Arsène, was never named nor mentioned in Japanese media.