One of the more interesting series hitting this spring, both in terms of content and animation style, is Ping Pong as part of the noitaminA block. The first character preview teaser has been released that introduces us to the character of Makoto “Smile” Tsukimoto, who is being played by Kouki Uchiyama. It’s a brief teaser with Uchiyama providing the narration but it definitely paints the visuals well as to how the series will look.
The show is based on the manga that ran for five volumes between 1996 and 1997. The original manga came from Taiyou Matsumoto, which spawned a 2002 live action film as well, and now Tatsunoko Productions will be bringing this to anime form in the spring with Masaaki Yuasa directing it. The January announcement came with a thirty second promotional video to give folks a feel for the new seinen sports series.
Plot concept: Makoto Tsukimoto (nicknamed Smile) is a quiet high-schooler who’s been friends with the loud and energetic Yukata Hoshino (nicknamed Peco) since childhood. They’re both in the local table tennis club and both have a natural talent for it, although Smile’s personality always enables him from winning against Peco. The club teacher however notices Smile’s talent and tries to make him gain some sportive tenacity.