Fist of the North Star: The Legends of the True Savior (真救世主伝説 北斗の拳Shin Kyūseishu Densetsu Hokuto no Ken) is a Japanese animated film series produced by TMS Entertainment and North Stars Pictures based on the manga Fist of the North Star by Buronson and Tetsuo Hara. The films are an updated re-imagining of the original story, including additional detail expanding of the story, modern artwork and animation, new characters, as well as minor alterations to some events. The series spans three theatrical films and two OVAs each focusing on a different set of chapters and main characters from the original story. These were released in Japan during a three year span between 2006 to 2008, culminating with the 25th anniversary of the original manga. The first film, as well as both OVAs, were distributed by Toho. A portion of the project's budget came from a trust fund established by SMBC Friend Securities, which was raised over 23 billion yen.
The voice cast includes Hiroshi Abe as Kenshiro, Takashi Ukaji as Raoh, Yuriko Ishida as Yuria, and Kou Shibasaki as Reina (a new character), all whom were live-action actors were little voice acting experience prior to the production of the movies.
Legend of Raoh: Chapter of Death in Love (ラオウ伝 殉愛の章 Raō Den Jun'ai no Shō?)
The film begins with a scene straight out of the original anime. Kenshiro is being tested in a contest know as 10 battles to the death. Based on the script, it appears that Ken's older brother Raoh is responsible for this contest,due to his curiosity of Ken's ability or possibly even as a way of eliminating him by death.Raoh and Souther observe, as a young Kenshiro defeats his much larger opponents 1 by 1 until, Ken locks eyes with Shū. Shū steps forward to accept Ken's challenge,and defeats him swiftly. It is then that Ken humbly accepts defeat and shows great respect and appreciation toward Shū, miraculously casting Ken in an omnipotent light. At which point Toki asks to take Ken's place, so that Ken's life would be sparred in exchange for Toki's. Souther interprets this as a challenge and claims that Toki would lose to him. An argument breaks out over the fate of Ken, with Shū debating that Ken should live and Souther swearing that it is against their law. To end the debate,and save Ken's life Shū destroys his own eyes using a special hand swipe technique, thus blinding himself permanently. It was this sacrifice that ultimately sparred Ken's life, although Souther remained angry. The scene ends with a shot of Raoh seemingly unfazed.
The film then goes on to explain and introduce the 3 brothers Toki, Ken, and Raoh. Through narration and summary the story of their training to become the sole successor of the ultimate martial art form "Hokouto no Ken", is told. The narration and video also make a point to describe in detail how the world became a barren wasteland full of violence, then continues to summarize the brothers separate paths ending with Raoh's path of becoming supreme leader.
A film adaptation of the Holy Emperor story arc, which primarily depicted the conflict between Kenshiro and Souther. As the subtitle suggest, the movie expands upon Raoh's back-story and motivations. New characters Reina, a woman who falls in love with him, and her brother Soga, Raoh's advisor, play an important part. Not only are they his military support but, also relate to other characters such as Ken and Toki. Especially Reina who stays loyal to Raoh, even in despair,and attempts to recruit Toki, as the story shifts to her point of view. Much of the plot involves Raoh's relationship with her, and military strategy, in his conquest to restore order in a land of chaos under his rule. Most of this portion is new content specific to this film. The other side of the story is the retelling of Ken's attempt to save and protect the villagers from Souther's Army with the influence and friendship of Shū. A small subplot of Bart returning to his home is also apparent. The end of the film is new content that explains the new characters, Soga & Reina's ties to the 3 main characters of the series, Raoh, Ken, & Toki.
Feature film released on March 11, 2006.The film was rated PG12 in Japan due to violent content. The DVD release of the film features over 500 additional frames of animation, as well as re-recorded dialogue by Takashi Ukaji (the voice of Raoh), resulting in a few differences from its theatrical release.
Legend of Yuria (ユリア伝 Yuria Den?)
This OVA features a somewhat original storyline because it focuses on Yuria, spanning from her childhood, including the day she first met Kenshiro, to the conclusion of the previous film, but for the most part the story remains the same as the manga / anime. Many important characters from the manga also appear, such as Raoh, Toki, Shin, Rei (which happens to be his only appearance in this series), and the Nanto Goshasei (with the omission of Juza) all of them interacting and relating to Yuria. The Nanto Goshasei act as a cohesive group of 5 characters that directly interact with Yuria, during the majority of the story, in essence they are her support, whereas Yuria is the protagonist. However, there is not a clear antagonist. This story is the most expansive of the series, even covering never before seen events from Yuria's childhood, revealing both her mother and father, as well as her brother Ryuuga. It also fills in some details that were never addressed in the original story, such as the time and place when Yuria developed her illness, and the confrontation between Ken and Jagi that led to Jagi's disfigurement. Also there are scenes taken straight from the anime that have been altered significantly. One of the more notable differences is the addition of Yuria's dog Tobi,who serves an important role in the relationship between her and Ken. Because of its emphasis on Yuria, this OVA features very few fight scenes compared to the other installments,instead focusing on her love and concern, mostly for Ken, but also for the planet and its innocents. It provides some insight into her thoughts and motives, as well as explaining her where abouts during the timeline of the manga / anime, in which she was thought to be dead. It also displays how she transitioned into the role of Last Nanto General. However, this OVA does not follow Yuria up to the moment of her death or acknowledge any events prior to the death of Souther,making it an incomplete recollection of her life and is without a major conclusion or climax, making it less of a stand alone story. Instead, "Yuria Den" like the rest of the series (excepet "Kenshiro Den") is a more of a fill in the blanks addition and compliment,to the original story.
OVA released February 23, 2007.
Legend of Raoh: Chapter of Fierce Fight (ラオウ伝 激闘の章 Raō Den Gekitō no Shō?)
A film adaptation of the Last Nanto General story arc from the manga, depicting the final battle between Kenshiro and Raoh and the conclusion of the Hokouto no Ken. As an adaptation some events have been excluded from the story,(such as Raoh's fight with Juza) where as others have been altered or expanded. New content featuring Raoh's perspective and military strategy have been added to the story. The story serves as the follow up to the 1st film in the series, which introduced Raoh and Reina's relationship, this time bringing it to a conclusion.
Feature film released on April 28, 2007. Nobuaki Kakuda voices the character of Akashachi the Pirate. To promote the release of the film, a funeral event for the character of Raoh was held at the Koyasan Tokyo Betsuin for ten days, beginning on April 10, 2007. Shinji Tanimura served as the funeral director, while Takashi Ukaji gave the memorial address. Nearly 3,000 fans attended the event.
Legend of Toki (トキ伝 Toki Den?)
An OVA which centers around Toki and his relationship with his brother Raoh. The OVA introduces another new character named Sara, a female doctor who watches over Toki and becomes his love interest.
OVA released on March 26, 2008.
Zero: Legend of Kenshiro (ZERO ケンシロウ伝 Zero Kenshirō Den?)
The film's story is a prequel to the Fist of the North Star depicting the one-year interval between Kenshiro's defeat at the hands of Shin and their later battle. Unlike the others in the series this film has a completely original storyline, featuring Kenshiro as the central character.
Feature film released on October 11, 2008. Many of the voice actors from the original TV series were cast for the roles of numerous new characters in the movie. Similarly to the funeral that was held to promote the second Raoh film, a wedding event was held at the Nippon Seinenkan Grand Hall on September 13, 2008 (coinciding with the 25th anniversary of the Weekly Shonen Jump debut of Hokuto no Ken) to promote the film.
Characters from the original manga
- Jagi (ジャギ?)
- Voiced by: David Ito
- Reina (レイナ?)
- Voiced by: Kou Shibasaki
- Introduced in Raoh Den, she is a childhood friend of Raoh, and determined female general of his cavalry. Her character design was done by Tsukasa Hojo. Reina, like Raoh and his brothers, is a native of the Land of Asura. Before Raoh left Asura, he promised Reina that he would come back to save their homeland.
- Souga (ソウガ Sōga?)
- Voiced by: Unshou Ishizuka
- Reina's brother, also introduced in Raoh Den. Master of Sūzan Senpū Kyaku (嵩山旋風脚?, "Songshan Whirlwind Kick"). He and his sister left the Land of Asura to join Raoh's army and become his loyal followers. He lost his right leg at Cassandra and wears a prosthetic. After he was struck with a fatal attack by Gaiya which gave him a mere two months to live, he came up with a ruse to scare Raoh's men out of any inclinations of desertion or rebellion. He made it look as if he had allowed an assassin into Raoh's palace and Raoh subsequently killed him in front of his horrified troops.
- Pluto (冥王 Meiō?)
- Voiced by: Masuo Amada
- A rival warlord who fights against Reina. He is secretly being manipulated by Gaiya. Meiō controls what was once Southern Cross and Godland.
- Dharma (ダーマ Dāma?)
- Voiced by: Yusaku Yara
- Appears in Yuria Den as Yuria's predecessor of Last General of Nanto. He also served as Yuria and Ryūga's guardian when they were children. He gave his position to Yuria before his death. He originally appeared in the manga as an unnamed character in a flashback.
- Toby (トビー Tobii?)
- Voiced by: Yoshimitsu Shimoyama
- Appears in Yuria Den as Yuria's pet bull terrier, whom she found abandoned as a puppy at the doorsteps of Ryūken's dojo when she was a child. Yuria proclaims that he bears the "Star of Loyalty" (忠義の星 Chūgi no Hoshi?).
- Sara (サラ?)
- Voiced by: Aya Hirano
- Appears in Toki Den as a female doctor connected to the Hokuto Shinken dojo. A friend of Toki's, she diagnoses his illness and travels with him to his new village.
- Jugai (ジュガイ?)
- Voiced by: Rikiya Koyama
- Appears in Kenshiro Den as Shin's rival to successorship of Nanto Koshūken.
- Fūgen (フウゲン?)
- Voiced by: Takeshi Aono
- Appears in Kenshiro Den, he is the Nanto Koshūken master who trained Shin and Jugai.
- ↑ "FIST OF THE NORTH STAR: THE LEGENDS OF THE TRUE SAVIOR at GAGA Corporation".
- ↑ "North Stars Pictures Inc. - Company Overview".
- ↑ Lewis, Leo (April 19, 2007). "Fantasy funeral brings out thousands of real mourners - Times Online". The Times (London).
- ↑ "Fist of the North Star Manga Marks 25 Years with Wedding".
- Hokuto no Ken official site (Japanese)
- Fist of the North Star: The Legends of the True Savior (anime) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia