In next week’s 34th issue of the Japanese Weekly Shonen Magazine it will be revealed that a continuation to Hajime no Ippo or Fighting Spirit will premiere this fall. The announcement was made through an image which read “Ippo fights the formidable enemy Sawamura! Dempsey breaks down?!” Hajime no Ippo by George Morikawa has been serializing on Kodanasha’s Weekly Shonen Magazine since October 1989. 103 volumes (with another being published in August) of the story have been compiled, and almost 1,000 chapters have been published to this day, making Hajime no Ippo one of the longest running manga series.
Morikawa’s acclaimed serial has been taken to the screen twice already. Once in the early 2000′s by the name of Hajime no Ippo: The Fighting! produced by studio Madhouse. It was directed by Satoshi Nishimura (Trigun), and adapted by Tatsuhiko Urahata (Master Keaton, Monster). The series proved be just as successful as the original story, and thus a sequel titled Hajime no Ippo: New Challenger aired nine years later. Jun Shishido (The Princess and the Pilot) directed and Kazuyuki Fudeyasu (Kampfer, Hetalia The Beautiful World) was in charge of the script. Before Geneon Entertainment went under, it released the first TV series in NA. Moreover, an OVA and an anime film were also commissioned.