Have you seen this hilarious and convincingly strange meme-like picture of a Dragonball Z fan at the ready to strip naked to the sound of the making of a new DBZ series announced by Toriyama himself? It's been making its way across the internet, a sort of pingpong piece of info being bounced around websites and multiple anime Facebook pages, Youtube, and such. And it's got everyone buzzing. But is this for real? Did Akira Toriyama, the creator responsible for the hit manga series which turned into a hit animated series, just candidly release a statement that the Battle of Gods movie's success would spark a whole new series with a new wave of episodes? Have the world's community of avid Dragonball Z fans' greatest dreams just been realized? Common sense would say something's up.
There's no doubt that the movie was successful. With all the hype and toys and advertising on T.V. and at popular fast-food places in Japan, Battle of Gods pulled in big numbers at the box office. 561,098 tickets were sold in just two days to be exact, with it projected to make 1 million ticket sales in its sixth day, making it the fastest-grossing movie in Japan this year. Toei Animation is hoping that, just in Japan alone, the movie will gross ¥3 billion (about US$32 million). And now that its release date for March has passed, fans around the world are anxiously awaiting its release in their own countries, if it hasn't already.
So surely, Battle of Gods has reached great proportions and is getting worldwide attention. But the proclamation of possibly 200 more new episodes is oddly specific. Has Toriyama gone mad? I'm sure a sane animation company would not agree to such a thing in such short notice, at least not without an official announcement. Also, Toriyama would not make statements like that seeing as he isn't a spokesperson for Toei's operations. Granted, he was deeply involved in the project, designing new characters and the story and working with the animation staff on developing the film but he doesn't permanently work there. In a recent interview with Japan's popular V-Jump magazine, he did speak briefly about his experience working on the movie, stating that he was glad he didn't have to draw everything himself and that he could leave it up to the staff. (Kudos to the hardworking animators and studio staff of Japan!)
So where is there evidence of this press conference where Toriyama tells all? Apparently, nowhere has Toriyama said anything of the sort. Some are speculating whether it was an April Fools joke because no record of it can be found anywhere! Though Toriyama has said in an interview that he wouldn't mind seeing Dragonball Z on TV again, it hasn't been confirmed. And if it had been, DBZ sites would have been all over it like vultures on a nice big chunk of buffalo carrion. So the picture is fake... for now.
But will there be more added to the series? Is Dragonball Z returning? Toriyama admitted on the Dragonball movie 2013 website that he had forgotten many things about the DBZ story himself since it had been so long. He quickly got back into it via Battle of Gods but he also revealed on a March 24th TV program celebrating the release of the new movie, that he rarely draws manga at all because he hates inking.
His old editor then phoned in to reveal an instant when Toriyama developed an "ink allergy", the artist confessing to him that he could not ink without breaking out into a rash. Toriyama did say he still enjoys thinking up stories. So, it depends. There may be no hope for the continuation of the manga, at least by the hand of this manga creator, but if Toriyama decides he wants to continue working with Toei to make another series with the world's beloved DBZ crew, then maybe DBZ will continue, but most likely as more specials and OVAs. Well, we'll have to see... If they can make a movie after 17 years, they just might.
In the meantime, here's a link to the Battle of Gods trailer for those who haven't seen it: Click Here
And some more interesting footage from the movie (including shots of Vegeta DANCING??) and with the famous DBZ voice actors/actresses: Click Here