Posted by: johansite | March 7, 2009

The beginning of One Piece

One Piece (ワンピース Wan Pīsu?) is a Japanese shōnen manga written and illustrated by Eiichirō Oda, that has been serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine since August 4, 1997. The individual chapters are being published in tankōbon volumes by Shueisha, with the first released on December 24, 1997 and 53 volumes released as of March 4, 2009. One Piece follows the adventures of Monkey D. Luffy, a 17-year-old boy, who gained supernatural abilities by eating a magical fruit, and his ragtag crew of heroic pirates, named the Straw Hats. Luffy’s greatest ambition is to obtain the world’s ultimate treasure, One Piece, and thereby become the next Pirate King (“King of the Pirates” in the English versions). When creating the series, Oda was heavily influenced by the manga Dragon Ball.

One Piece is licensed for an English language release in North America by Viz Media. The individual chapters are being serialized in Viz’s Shonen Jump manga anthology and being published in tankōbon volumes. In the United Kingdom, the series was being released by Gollancz Manga, it is now released by Viz Media along with all of their other manga previously released by Gollancz Manga. Madman Entertainment is releasing the series in Australia and New Zealand.

The series was adapted into an original video animation (OVA) produced in 1998 by Production I.G. It was later adapted into a full anime series by Toei Animation that premiered in Japan on Fuji Television on October 20, 1999. As of March 1, 2009, 391 episodes of the series have aired. The anime series was licensed for a heavily edited English dubbed broadcast in North America by 4Kids Entertainment. It has since been licensed for a full Region 1 DVD release and broadcast by Funimation Entertainment in it’s original and Uncut form. In addition to the anime series and OVA, One Piece has been adapted into nine feature films by Toei and multiple video games based on the series have been released.

With over 140 million copies sold, One Piece is the third highest selling manga in the history of Weekly Shōnen Jump. It is considered their most acclaimed and all-time third-best-selling title in Japan.

Manga

Written and illustrated by Eiichirō Oda, One Piece premiered in the August 4, 1997 issue Weekly Shōnen Jump, where it continues serialization. In total, 533 chapters have been released in Japan as of February 20, 2009. As of March 4, 2009, the first 522 of those chapters have been compiled into 53 tankōbon volumes in Japan by Shueisha,[17] with the first volume released December 24, 1997.[18]

The series is licensed for an English language release in North America by Viz Media.[19] The creator of One Piece was “sensitive” about how it would be translated.[20] On July 8, 2002 ICv2 reported that One Piece would be in the opening line-up of the Shonen Jump magazine.[21] When its first issue was released in November 2002, so was the first chapter of One Piece.[22] The magazine has been publishing successive chapters ever since. The first volume was released by Viz in June 2003.[23] As of February 3, 2009, 20 volumes have been published.[24] And an upcoming 20th volume is scheduled for February 3, 2009.[25] The English volumes are being distributed in Australia and New Zealand by Madman Entertainment, with the first volume to be released on November 10, 2008.[26] In the United Kingdom it was published by Gollancz Manga.[27] Currently it is published there by Viz.[28] One Piece is released in Denmark, Germany and Sweden by Carlsen.

[edit] Straw Hat Theater

In addition to the regular manga series, Oda also wrote a variety of short manga pieces, generally less than five pages, featuring the One Piece characters. Unrelated to the series’ plot, the side comics are drawn in super deformed style, giving all the characters large heads and tiny bodies. Some of these side comics are included in the data book One Piece BLUE: Grand Data File in four-panel format. Eight side stories, collectively referred to as the Straw Hat Theater, were included in the One Piece Logs, a series of magazine-format manga compilations released from late 2005 through April 2006. These short bonus comics were featured at the end of the 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th, and 7th Logs, and advertised as “Brand-New from Oda-sensei! Special Manga. According to Oda, for each comic he was given three sheets of blank paper by his editor and told to “draw anything”, with these being the result. The first five Straw Hat Theater manga shorts were also included in the One Piece YELLOW: Grand Elements data book, along with another bonus side comic. These five comics were also adapted into anime shorts, narrated by Masaya Takatsuka, that aired alongside episodes 279 through 283 of the One Piece anime adaptation.[citation needed]

  1. “Report Time”, published in The 2nd Log: “SANJI” in November 2005
  2. “Obahan Time”, published in The 3rd Log: “NAMI” in December 2005
  3. “No Code-of-Honor Time” (仁義ない TIME Jingi nai TIME?), published in The 5th Log: CHOPPER” in February 2006
  4. “Chopper Man”, published in The 6th Log: “ALABASTA” in March 2006
  5. “Monster Time”, published in The 7th Log: “VIVI” in April 2006
  6. “Space Time”, published in One Piece YELLOW: Grand Elements in April 2007[29]
  7. “Red-Hair of Class 3-Sea Time”, published in One Piece: 10th Treasures in September 2007
  8. “Märchen Time”, published in The 10th Log: “BELL” in April 2008

[edit] Anime

Produced by Toei Animation, the One Piece anime series debuted in Japan on Fuji TV on October 20, 1999, where it continues to air today. As of March 15, 2009, 393 episodes of the series have aired, spanning ten seasons.

4Kids Entertainment licensed the series for an English language dubbed broadcast and release in North America. The 4Kids episodes aired in the United States on the Fox network as part of the Fox Box block, premiering on September 18, 2004. The first 143 episodes of the original were cut down to 104 in the dubbed version. The remaining content was subject to heavy editing. Sanji’s cigarettes for example were turned into lollipops,[30] and “the skin of a black pirate was changed to a tan mulatto / white color.”[31] In December 2006, 4Kids cancelled production of the dubbed version.[32]

On April 12, 2007, Funimation Entertainment announced it acquired the license for the series. After producing a new English voice dub in, the company released its first unedited, bilingual DVD box set, containing 13 episodes, on May 27, 2008.[33] Similarly sized sets followed with two sets released as of September 16, 2008.[34] The Funimation English dubbed episodes premiered on the Cartoon Network on September 29, 2007 and aired until it was cancelled on March 29, 2008.[35] The remainder of Funimation’s dubbed episodes continued being aired on Australia’s Cartoon Network, and then shifted into reruns of the Funimation dub before being replaced by Dragon Ball Z.

In Singapore, the anime is licensed by Odex, who produced an English dub which lasted 104 episodes. It was produced in two 52-episode seasons, with some of the original actors leaving in between seasons.[citation needed]

In the July 2008 issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump, it was announced that the prototype one-shot that preceded One Piece, Romance Dawn, is being adapted into an anime OVA as part of the Jump Super Anime Tour.[13][36][37]

[edit] Films

Since the debut of the series on television, Toei Animation has also produced nine One Piece feature films, traditionally released during the Japanese school spring break since 2000.[38]. Although the first three films were less than an hour long and played as part of a double-bill with other anime movies. In typical fashion for movies based on serialized manga, the films feature self-contained, completely original plots with animation of higher quality than what the weekly anime allows for.

Additionally, three of these movies have had special featurette shorts, showcasing the characters engaged in various activities unrelated to the series. They were shown dancing in Jango’s Dance Carnival with Clockwork Island Adventure; playing soccer in Dream Soccer King! with Chopper’s Kingdom on the Island of Strange Animals; and playing baseball in Take Aim! The Pirate Baseball King with Curse of the Sacred Sword.

The first, third, and ninth films were directed by Atsuji Shimizu.[39] The fourth and seventh films were directed by Kōnosuke Uda.[40] The fifth film was directed by Kazuhisa Takenouchi.[41] The sixth film was directed by Mamoru Hosoda.[42] The eighth film was directed by Takahiro Imamura.[43]

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