The sprawling Dragon Ball manga and anime shonen franchise, created by Akira Toriyama, has amassed a thriving fanbase who are drawn to its goofy, adventurous spirit and the ever-evolving saga of Son Goku, his family, and friends since its inception in 1984. On Thursday, a teaser trailer for the upcoming Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero film debuted at New York Comic-Con (though it has yet to be made public).
The cast and creators of the franchise, as well as the upcoming Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero, came together from all over the world for the New York Comic-Con panel. The English dub voice actors Ian Sinclair (Whis) and Monica Rial were onstage in person (Bulma). Akio Iyoku, executive producer of the Dragon Ball series and manga editor for Toriyama, and Toei Animation producer Norishida Hayashira were broadcast live from Tokyo and shared a translator (who produced the previous 2018 Dragon Ball Super: Broly movie).
The highly anticipated film Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero will be released in Japan in 2022, ten years after Goku defeated Majin Buu. After the 2021 San Diego Comic-Con left fans even more waiting, the New York panel delivered even more surprises, including a teaser.
The footage in the teaser trailer was taken from completed scenes in the film. Goku, Piccolo, Pan, a fleeting glance at Broly, and newcomers Gamma 1 and Gamma 2 appeared in the trailer. Gamma 1 and Gamma 2 were revealed to be the names of the twin-like grey aliens in corpsman-like uniforms, with their character designs already teased at San Diego Comic-Con, though their purpose in the film remains a mystery.
Iyoku debuted new character designs for well-known faces. Dende was the first to go. “Did you notice anything different? He’s gotten a little bigger,” he said, as the little guy has grown in size over time.
Bulma, the brilliant inventor, was also depicted in a yellow jumpsuit. “If Bulma is in [the movie], do we get to see [her husband] Vegeta as well?” Rial, her voice actress, wondered. While Vegeta only appeared in the trailer as a photograph wearing his infamous badman shirt, Iyoku promised that the much-loved hot-headed Saiyan Prince will appear without revealing his role. New designs of Kori, the eight-century-old rotund walking kitty, and veteran of the old Dragon Ball series, were also revealed, which were inspired by Toriyama’s own cat. “The note to take is his body’s perfect balance and his feline attribute,” Iyoku explained.
Pan, Goku’s chubby granddaughter born to Videl and Gohan, will play a pivotal role in the story. Iyoki revealed some details about Pan’s friendship with Piccolo. “Pan has matured a little, and it appears Piccolo has been training her,” Iyoki explained.
Toshio Furukawa, Piccolo’s original Japanese voice, revealed in pre-recorded footage that “Piccolo plays a much more active role.” “He dotes on her like a good grandpa” when Pan is under his tutelage. Furukawa promised fun when seeing Piccolo as her teacher, eliciting “awws” from the audience. “I love the idea of Grandpa Piccolo,” Sinclair said. Piccolo is the best father in the world.”
“We often catch ourselves improving the details,” Hayashida said of the film’s production. “We guarantee a cinematic experience.” “One of the themes is ‘pop,'” he continued. We use the term ‘pop’ to describe things that are trendy, current, and modern. We noticed some colour and texture movement that had never been seen before.”
Masako Nozawa, Goku and his two sons’ original Japanese voice, warned fans to be on the lookout for the nefarious Red Ribbon organisation (cue oooooos from the audience): “With a grin on my face, that’s all I have to say.” Isn’t it true that they’re horrible people? “How could they be so fearful?”
There hasn’t been any major news about the English dubbing or a release date in the United States. “We haven’t started dubbing yet,” Rial said, “but we are critically excited.” “I would like it to be as close to the US release as possible,” Iyoku said of the Japan release of Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero, which is set for 2022. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can with a concrete answer.”