Toei announces North American premiere of The First Slam Dunk movie

The First Slam Dunk is coming to North America (Image via Toei Animation).
The First Slam Dunk is coming to North America (Image via Toei Animation).

Entertainment company Toei Animation has just announced that The First Slam Dunk movie, released in Japan in 2022 and directed by manga series author Takehiko Inoue, is going to premier with English subs in North America on July 3 in the 2023 Anime Expo event in Los Angeles, California.

All guests in the 2023 Anime Expo will have the opportunity to watch the premiere of the movie in North America, and the first 2,500 guests will receive a special giveaway upon watching The First Slam Dunk movie.

The First Slam Dunk movie to be released in North America in July

Toei Animation announced via Twitter that they are going to finally release The First Slam Dunk movie on America on July 3 this year, after the film was originally released on December 3, 2022, back in Japan. It’s going to be the first time that original content from the series is released in America since the days of the original run in both the manga and the anime adaptation.

This release is going to take place at the 2023 Anime Expo in Los Angeles, California, which is also going to feature several voice actors such as Aika Kobayashi (Love Live! Series Event feat. Yohane), Mayu Sagara (School Idol Club), and Sayuri Date (Kanon) as well. The first 2,500 attendees will receive a special gift when watching the movie.

The First Slam Dunk is going to be screened with the original Japanese voice acting in English sub, and some of the most prominent voice actors in the film are Shugo Nakamura (Ryota Miyagi), Jun Kasama (Hisashi Mitsui), Shin'ichiro Kamio (Kaede Rukawa), Subaru Kimura (Hanamichi Sakuragi), among many more.

More about The First Slam Dunk movie

The Slam Dunk movie tells the story of Ryota Miyagi, a student at Shohoku High School and inter-guard of their basketball team. His older brother Sota inspired his love for the game, and the film shows how him and the rest of the team, which features the likes of Hanamichi Sakuragi, Takenori Akagi, and others, challenge the reigning champions at the time, the Sannoh School.

The First Slam Dunk movie had been long in the making. Inoue had been requested by Toei for a film for the franchise since 2003 when the anime adaptation got very good sales numbers, but the author showed no interest in doing one. However, in January 2021, he announced on Twitter that the movie was in the pipelines, and they were following his designs in the 2018 new volumes.

In general, the movie so far has been a big success for the then-sleeping franchise, winning the 2023 Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year, and grossing $260 million worldwide, thus becoming the fifth highest-grossing anime film of all time.