Discotek Media made a pretty sweet pickup recently with the acquisition of the Fighting Spirit: Hajime no Ippo property. The distributor has picked up the original 75-episode TV series with plans for it to be released across three sets. They also acquired the 76th episode which didn’t see release when Geneon Entertainment began releasing the property as well as the OVA and the Champion Road TV movie.
The release will be in Japanese with English subtitles and will include the English and Spanish dubs where available. The sets will be working from a brand new upscale. The first set of 24 episodes is scheduled for a January 26th, 2021 release priced at $49.95. The trilingual set comes in at 530 minutes total in 1080p goodness.
Now, the second set with episodes 25 through 48 us set with a March 30th, 2021 release date that’s priced the same at $49.95. It lists the clean opening and closings as its main extras.
The 2000 anime series was directed by Satoshi Nishimura based n the series composition by Tatsuhiko Urahata. Koiji Sugiura worked on the character designs based on George Morikawa’s original manga work with Madhouse handling the animation production.
The Japanese cast includes Kohei Kiyasu as Ippo Makunouchi, Keiji Fujiwara as Tatsuya Kimura, Kenji Utsumi as Genji Kamogawa, Rikiya Koyama as Mamoru Takamura, Sanae Kobayashi as Kumi Mashiba, Tomokazu Seki as Ichiro Miyata, and Wataru Takagi as Masaru Aoki.
The English dub was directed by Richard Epcar based on scripts by Yurika Dennis and Anna Exter. The English cast includes Steve Cannon as Ippo Makunouchi, David Lelyveld as Alexander Volg Zangief, Doug Erholtz as Takeshi Sendo, Eddie Frierson as Mamoru Takamura, Grant George as Tatsuya Kimura, Jason Palmer as Ichiro Miyata, Jennifer Sekiguchi as Kumi Mashiba, Jim Taggert as Masaru Aoki, Rafael Antonio as Eiji Date, and Richard George as Genji Kamogawa.
Plot Concept: The young boxer Ippo Makunouchi has earned his pro boxing license, won his first matches, and even entered a tournament! But his greatest challenges lie ahead, starting with the conclusion of his tournament match against the terrifying Ryo Mashiba. Ippo’s made a name for himself, and now he has other talented rookies, top-ranking boxers, and even the featherweight champ of Japan itching for a fight with him.