|Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods|
|Directed by||Masahiro Hosoda|
|Produced by|| Kazumi Fujioka (management)|
Gyarmath Bogdan (Toei Animation)
|Written by|| Yūsuke Watanabe (screenplay)|
Akira Toriyama (original series author)
|Starring|| Masako Nozawa|
|Art director(s)||Hiroshi Katō|
|Animation director||Tadayoshi Yamamuro|
|Music by||Norihito Sumitomo|
|Distributed by|| Toei Company, Ltd.|
20th Century Fox
|Release date(s)||March 30, 2013 (Japan)|
|Running time||85 minutes|
Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods (ドラゴンボールZ 神と神, Doragon Bōru Zetto: Kami to Kami; lit. "Dragon Ball Z: God and God") is the 14th Dragon Ball Z movie. It premiered in Japanese theaters on March 30, 2013. It was the first animated Dragon Ball movie in 17 years to have a theatrical release, the last being the tenth anniversary movie Dragon Ball: The Path to Power in 1996, which followed the first three Dragon Ball films and the thirteen Dragon Ball Z films.
Approximately five years have passed since the titanic battle with Majin Buu, which determined the fate of the entire universe. From the Sacred World of the Kais, Kibito Kai and Old Kai telepathically discuss with King Kai about the early awakening of Bills. Goku is visiting King Kai's planet in order to train and, while he is running with Bubbles, he overhears their conversation. King Kai then explains that there are gods who give birth to life-forms and worlds but in contrast to them there are gods who maintain balance by destroying these things, the aptly named God of Destruction. Ecstatic over the thought of such a powerful foe, Goku states that he wishes to challenge Bills, but King Kai proceeds to scold him, revealing that the God of Destruction Bills has power that is in an entirely different dimension. On the World of the Kais, Kibito Kai and Old Kai wonder how many planets will be annihilated now that the God of Destruction has awoken.
Meanwhile, in Bills' temple, the mysterious Whis is walking slowly with a serious look. As he arrives in Bills' bedroom, alarm bombs are exploding, but Bills continues his 39 year long slumber. The god's attendant Whis insists that he awake now and threatens to perform an "awakening song" if he does not arise. Terrified, Bills shoots awake and proceeds to slide down from his bed atop a floating rock. He is still cranky, having been woken up 15 years earlier than before, but is reminded by Whis that he was the one that set this as the time of his next awakening and he is then questioned about his wanting to be woken early. Bills, now cleaning his fur, states that something in this era concerns him.
As he proceeds to eat breakfast, Bills questions Whis about the galactic tyrant Frieza, and whether or not he had destroyed Planet Vegeta. Whis confirms the planet's obliteration, and Bills is pleased to hear this. He then states that he was not particularly fond of the people on that planet, specifically King Vegeta. It is revealed he planned to destroy the planet himself, but because it was so distant, never bothered. Bills then reveals his distaste toward the evil Frieza as well, and he decides on destroying him next. However, Whis informs Bills that Frieza was killed some time ago by a Saiyan named Goku, who is also known by his birth-name, Kakarot. Whis then uses his scepter like a projector to display the past battle between Super Saiyan Goku and Frieza on Namek. Whis then notes that while nearly all of the Saiyans were destroyed along with their planet, a few survived and are living on other worlds, including the Saiyan Prince himself, Vegeta. While watching, Bills touches and destroys one of the eggs he was eating, and is genuinely surprised that anyone else could take down Frieza, let alone a Saiyan. Whis then further explains that the surviving Saiyans have acquired the ability to transform into Super Saiyans. The phrase appears to be familiar to Bills, and he then recalls having dreamed of battling something similar, a Super Saiyan God. He is convinced this must have been a prophetic dream, but is reminded by Whis that his dreams have been very unreliable in the past. To settle the matter, Bills decides to consult with the Oracle Fish. He questions the fish on whether or not a prediction was once made about his one day confronting a mighty warrior, but the Oracle Fish does not recall ever having stated this. However, Bills is convinced that it was stated, so the fish agrees that it must have been so. Now, Bills has no doubt that this warrior must be the Super Saiyan God. Whis is still skeptical however, and finds it hard to imagine anyone posing a real challenge for Bills. They decide to track down this foe by hunting down the remaining Saiyans. Whis reveals that most of them are on Earth, which is "Planet 4032-877" in the Seventh Universe. However, the one who defeated Frieza, Goku, is currently on King Kai's planet, so the two set off to confront him.
On Earth, Bulma is throwing herself a huge birthday party at Capsule Corporation, and nearly all her friends and family are partaking in the celebration with the exception of Goku and Vegeta, who much to her annoyance, are off training.
Back on King Kai's planet, King Kai warns Goku that Bills is headed their way. However, much to Goku's confusion, he is unable to sense anyone. King Kai then explains that the energy of a god is beyond Goku's comprehension, thus why he is unable to feel his presence. King Kai hides Goku in his house, but it is too late; Bills and Whis have already arrived. After King Kai politely welcomes them, Bills complains about how small the planet is, but Whis reminds him that he himself destroyed the original one long ago after losing in a game of hide-and-seek. Bills then proceeds to explain that he has traveled here because he has business with the Saiyan and he calls out Goku. After a brief introduction, Bills questions Goku about the Super Saiyan God, but while Goku and King Kai are both very familiar with the regular Super Saiyan transformations, neither of them has ever heard of this mysterious new form.
Goku then proceeds to demonstrate the various Super Saiyan levels that he is capable of utilizing. These feats impress Bills, but reveals that he is not particularly concerned, and that Goku is either very confident or just a fool. Goku then respectfully challenges Bills, much to the dismay of King Kai, who continues to insist that he is being very foolish. Nevertheless, Super Saiyan 3 Goku then engages Bills in combat, but his first attack is effortlessly blocked. Goku is then tossed and sent flying into the ground by a mere flick to the head. Now seemingly angry, Goku charges once again, but Bills repeatedly dodges and blocks Goku's attacks and even effortlessly evades a mighty punch that subsequently blows straight through King Kai's planet. Bills' incredible speed then allows him to come up behind Goku, and he defeats him with a single carefree chop to the neck, rendering him unconscious and causing him to revert back to his base form. Disappointed by the subsequent lack of challenge, Bills departs in order to learn if Vegeta and the other Saiyans on Earth know more about the mysterious Super Saiyan God.
Meanwhile, back on Earth, Vegeta is off on his own training when King Kai telepathically contacts him. He is then warned about then impending arrival of Bills, and reveals he has heard of the God of Destruction before, but he is not worried about the situation. Nevertheless, King Kai warns that the Earth will be destroyed if they do not stay away from Bills, but Vegeta refuses to heed these warnings until King Kai informs him that Bills took down Super Saiyan 3 Goku in just a few blows. After King Kai's transmission, Goku wakes up and is just barely alive. Meanwhile, the shocked Vegeta rushes out and interrupts the party to warn everyone, but Bills and Whis have already arrived. Bills casually greets him, and it is revealed that the two have met before. Vegeta then recalls that when he was a boy, his father King Vegeta treated Bills to a feast in his palace and that Bills used the Saiyan King as a stepping stone while he was eating. Now, seeing Bills face-to-face once again, Vegeta realizes the God of Destruction is incredibly dangerous. Bills then notices that they are having some sort of party and Vegeta proceeds to explain that this is his wife's birthday party. Before proceeding to partake in the festivities, Bills questions Vegeta about the Super Saiyan God. Vegeta explains he knows nothing about it either. Whis, who was previously skeptical, is now confident that Bills' "prophetic dream" was once again a mistake. Bulma then arrives, and Bills and Whis politely introduce themselves. The festivities continue, with Piccolo singing karaoke, Whis eating, and Bills break dancing, all the while Vegeta continues to play the polite and worrisome host.
As the festivities continue, it is revealed that the grand prize of Bulma's bingo tournament is the set of the seven Dragon Balls. Bulma just wanted to have a reason to see everyone, this is why she has special prizes for the Bingo game, such as a castle, as she knew everyone would get together if she had these kinds of prizes. When asked about her age, Bulma says she is 38, but even Krillin is skeptical when he hears the number.
Meanwhile, the Pilaf Gang sneaks into the party with the intention of stealing the Dragon Balls. However, they are unrecognizable, as they have been turned into children due to a faulty wish for youth that made them far too young, so they are also invited to the party. Trunks claims Mai is his girlfriend just to boast to Goten, and when the group questions Mai about her age, she states she is 41, much to the amusement of everyone. As the celebration proceeds, Emperor Pilaf notices Goten and sees his incredibly similar appearance to Goku. He then recalls when Great Ape Goku destroyed his castle decades ago. The Pilaf Gang then steals the four-star Dragon Ball, and Mai holds Trunks at gun-point. Of course, no one is concerned by this, even believing it to be some kind of act. A drunken Gohan appears as Great Saiyaman, proceeding to ask Mai to shoot him. He snaps all the bullets with one finger, but two of them go astray. One hits Videl's leg and another one hits Bills' forehead. While healing her, Dende notices that Videl is pregnant, a fact that she had been hiding in order to surprise Gohan, and Dende maintains the secret.
Bills, who was hit by a stray bullet, now decides to destroy Earth. As he powers up a devastating attack, Vegeta interrupts, exclaiming that the bingo tournament is about to begin. He then desperately performs a song and dance about bingo, which convinces Bills and Whis to go on eating for a while longer. As such, the others begin to wonder why Vegeta is acting so strangely. Bulma forgives the Pilaf trio's misbehavior and collects the four-star Dragon Ball from them for the bingo tournament. As the others play bingo, Whis informs Bills that there is supposed to be some delicious custard pudding, and that Mr. Buu is currently eating some. Bills politely asks Buu for one and Whis asks for two, but Buu refuses, stating he will eat them all himself. Bills cannot believe Buu will not share when he has so many, but Buu shouts back at him saying they are all his and proceeds to lick them all. Bills struggles with Buu over the pudding, until Buu tries to turn him into candy.
Vegeta finally notices the altercation and curses himself for letting Bills out of his sight. The God of Destruction snaps, stating that he will destroy the Earth for this, and he unleashes his power in a fit of rage. Mr. Buu rushes at Bills, but is sent flying off into a lake with a mere Kiai. Vegeta yells for Bills to stop, but Master Roshi announces the Z Fighters' attack. Android 18, Tien Shinhan and Piccolo attempt to fight Bills and the God of Destruction easily defeats them one after another: #18 is knocked out by a single elbow strike to the neck, Tien's attack is halted by a pair of chopsticks Bills pick up from a table, using them to catch his fist and toss him, and Piccolo is rendered unconscious from two swift pressure point strikes to the body by Bills' chopsticks. Bills then retrieves Buu from the lake, and meanwhile Gohan powers up and attacks Bills only to have his full-nelson reversed and his head slammed into Buu's. Gohan is then taken down by a heavy kick to the abdomen from Bills, and Buu is smashed back down into the lake. Goten and Trunks perform the Fusion Dance to form Gotenks, who then transforms into a Super Saiyan and attempts to battle Bills but is quickly defeated as well. Out of options, Vegeta decides to fight Bills on his own after the other Z Fighters have been defeated. Meanwhile, Whis enjoys sushi in a restaurant near Capsule Corporation, not even bothering to watch the battles unfold, and a motorcycle policewoman observes the battle at Capsule Corporation from a distance.
Unable to stand up to Bills' incredible power, Vegeta is ultimately defeated. As Bills is about to finish him off, Bulma walks up and scolds him for ruining her birthday party, slapping him in the process. The God of Destruction responds with a slap of his own. Seeing his wife being beaten, Vegeta explodes in a fit of rage. He powers up and attacks Bills head on. Watching the battle, Master Roshi exclaims in amazement that Vegeta's power seems to have surpassed that of even Goku. Vegeta's anger gives him incredible strength, but as soon as his rampage is over, Bills is left unharmed and proceeds to lightly flick Vegeta in the forehead, rendering him unconscious.
Goku then arrives and pleads with Bills to allow him to attempt to reach the Super Saiyan God form. Bills agrees, and Goku decides to use the Dragon Balls in order to ask Shenron how to reach the form. The dragon says that a Super Saiyan God once appeared on Planet Vegeta to stop evil Saiyans, but he failed because of the form's time limit. Bills steps forward and asks the dragon the method of becoming a Super Saiyan God. Shenron then reveals that they need the light of five righteous Saiyans to infuse their power into another Saiyan for him to turn Super Saiyan God. Gohan, Goten, Trunks and Vegeta hover above the ground, holding hands with Goku, and begin pouring their Super Saiyan power into him. Before long, Goku begins emitting an enormous power level. Everyone else then drops out of their Super Saiyan forms as their energy is completely transferred over to Goku, who is left with an amazing sparking aura. Krillin states that Goku has surely become a god now, but Piccolo responds by claiming that he has done nothing more than just gather up everyone's energy. Bills agrees, noting that a god's energy is not expressed in battle power, and Goku realizes that he will still be no match for Bills.
Whis then proceeds to remind them of what Shenron actually said, the power of five Saiyans must be infused into another. In other words, a total of six pure-hearted Saiyans is required. They struggle to think up where they can find another pure-hearted Saiyan, and Bulma remembers that Vegeta has a younger brother living off on some distant planet. Vegeta states he does not know his brother's whereabouts, and therefore would not be of any help. Growing impatient, Bills decides that he and Whis should depart, but Videl steps forward and says that there is another Saiyan, or at least that there will be. Dende then explains that Videl is pregnant, a fact she wanted to keep a secret to surprise Gohan later, but he is still ecstatic at hearing the wonderful news. Everyone is overjoyed and begins celebrating, but Bills interrupts them and questions whether Goku is going to ascend to Super Saiyan God or not. The ritual is attempted again, this time, with the addition of Videl who carries a Saiyan-Human hybrid inside her. The six of them gather together and grab hands. This time a blue light starts to emit from everyone and engulfs Goku, who begins to rise into the air. A bright blue light erupts from Goku, bursting into an intense aura that quickly dissipates, and Goku descends back down to the ground, apparently having finally become a Super Saiyan God.
Goku and Bills stand facing each other, staring down one another. Goku gradually begins glowing, slowly emitting a fiery red aura, and then launches toward Bills. Goku delivers a massive punch, but Bills intercepts it, causing a huge shock wave. The two take to the air to continue their fight and Bills states he is so far pleased, but Goku reveals he is dissatisfied with this new power, disliking the fact that he was unable to obtain it on his own. Angered, Bills delivers a heavy punch to Goku's abdomen and follows up with a ferocious kick, one that sends him flying through West City. Goku stops himself mid-air, but before he can counter-attack, Bills attacks from behind and puts him into a headlock. Bills then quickly whirls around him, proceeding to kick Goku off into a nearby forest, and then gives chase. Goku and Bills continue battling in the forest, when Bills sends Goku soaring with another kick straight to the face. Bills gives chase once again and the two end up in a mountainous desert area, surrounded by large rock formations. Goku and Bills charge at each other and their punches collide, sending out an Earth-shattering shock wave. They pull away from each other and a trickle of blood falls from a cut on Goku's cheek. Bills questions Goku on whether or not he is still dissatisfied with godhood, and Goku confirms that he is. Their battle is then pushed into a subterranean cavern, and Bills informs Goku this sort of pride can be a weakness. However, Bills then admits that he too is overall dissatisfied, having been fighting nowhere near his full strength. Goku is astonished, having been fighting at about 80% of his full strength. Now realizing Goku is also holding back, Bills charges and begins vigorously pummeling him. Suddenly Goku's red aura disappears and he reverts back to his normal state. The two continue their bout, with Goku utilizing Instant Transmission in order to counter Bills' increased speed. Bills then unleashes a barrage of rapid fire energy blasts that Goku barely manages to dodge. Goku manages to come around Bills' side and is able to strike him hard in the gut. Now truly angry, Bills fires off countless energy blasts in every direction. Goku tries to dodge all of the boulders falling from above, but he is quickly overwhelmed. He then suddenly bursts out as he transforms into a Super Saiyan.
Goku flies up to the surface, with Bills giving chase. Goku continues holding his own as the battle moves up into the Earth's atmosphere. Goku then fires a massive Kamehameha wave at Bills, but he takes the blast head on and then prepares a huge attack of his own, an enormous energy sphere. As Goku struggles against Bills' attack, he is reminded that the Super Saiyan God form's time limit had apparently run out. Goku reveals he had not noticed this, because as he fought he apparently absorbed that realm of power into his body. Due to this, even after returning to normal, Goku's power saw relatively no decrease. Bills' massive energy ball threatens to destroy the Earth, but as his friends and family cheer him on, Goku momentarily becomes a Super Saiyan God once again and repels the attack. Impressed, Bills decides to stop the fight if Goku agrees to surrender. Goku, having realizes he is truly no match for the God of Destruction, obliges and steps down. Impressed by Goku's power, Bills states he was the second strongest person he has ever done battle with. Goku laughs, but is curious as to why he is only second. Bills then reveals that while Whis is his attendant, he is also his martial arts master. Bills then also reveals this world is the Seventh Universe, but there are twelve universes in total. Goku cannot help but laugh at the prospect of there being even more incredible beings in existence. Goku then finally collapses out of exhaustion and causes panic among the Z Fighters and company, but Gohan confirms that Goku is still alive and well. Bills then proceeds to destroy the Earth as promised, and he fires off another fearsome-looking attack, but it destroys only a small rock, revealing that he is all out of stamina.
Whis proceeds to offer Goku the job of being the next God of Destruction after Bills one day perishes, but Goku turns him down. Bills then apologizes to Bulma for hitting her. She invites them to her next party, making them agree to not cause any problems next time. Bills understands, though states that next time he better receive some of the custard pudding he had longed for. Bulma promises that she will prepare some just for him and that he better like how they taste. Bills responds by threatening to destroy the Earth indefinitely if they do end up tasting bad, and Goku exclaims he will stop him again if he tries. Bills and Whis bid everyone farewell, and depart into space. Watching these events from their respective planets, King Kai, Kibito Kai and Old Kai cannot believe that Goku actually got the God of Destruction Bills to not destroy something, and they are amazed at Goku's character and his ability to befriend even the most fearsome of beings.
Back at his temple, Bills discusses with Whis about Goku and his immeasurable latent power. Bills then states that Goku and Vegeta might soon actually become fearsome foes. Whis pulls out some sushi that he brought back from Earth with him, and he and Bills begin to eat. He explains to Bills about soy sauce and wasabi, which he learned about while Bills was busy fighting. Bills proceeds to try some of the wasabi, which turns his face red and he shoots up into the air in extreme pain. Whis rushes over and karate chops Bills in order to put him to sleep for another three years, and then tells Bills to brush his teeth before going to bed.
Back on Earth, Bulma's birthday party recommences. Vegeta angrily informs Goku that next time he will be the one who gets to become the Super Saiyan God and Goku has better to cooperate. Goku states that Vegeta became an incredible Super Saiyan when he got angry over Bulma being hit, but Vegeta states he does not recall that. Goku says that the next time they are up against a powerful opponent, they should just have their enemy hit Bulma, to which Bulma responds by slapping Goku. Piccolo points out that Goku must have been around when that happened, and suspects that he teleported in and was watching everyone as they fought Bills. Hearing this, Oolong jumps on Goku yelling at him about their lives being in such extreme danger. Goku says he wanted to watch Bills to try and form a strategy, but ultimately, that was useless. Vegeta asks Bulma to slap Goku again, which she agrees to do with pleasure. Goku starts crawling away as Bulma prepares to slap him.
Development and production history
The scriptwriter Yūsuke Watanabe originally thought of the main villain Bills as a very bad guy who infects people with evil and who was the one who made the Saiyan race ruthless. In accordance to the original concept for this character, his name in Japanese, Birusu (ビルス), is a pun on "virus" (ビールス; German pronunciation). According to an interview with the Battle of Gods character designer, Tadayoshi Yamamuro, Bills originally looked like a lizard, but Toriyama changed his design entirely. Yamamuro's original concept for Super Saiyan God had the form being more muscular, wearing a cloak, and with a hairstyle in-between Super Saiyan 3 and Super Saiyan 4. Toriyama came up with a picture of Super Saiyan God that was completely different than Yamamuro's own initial muscular, cloaked design. They went back and forth like this a bit before settling on the final design. Also, Yūsuke Watanabe wanted the party in the film to be Krillin and Android 18's wedding, but Akira Toriyama changed this to Bulma's birthday.
The film was first announced on July 2012, in the 33rd issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump. Early in July, the official website for the magazine had already opened a "D" teaser page with a countdown to a "surprise" on Saturday, July 14, release date of the 33rd issue. On July 14, the countdown site and official websites were changed to show Shenron appearing and then disappearing, revealing some minor information of the upcoming film; this includes the premiere date, staff information, and companies involved in the production (Fox International Productions Japan, Shueisha, Fuji TV, Toei Animation, Bandai, Bandai Namco Games, and Bird Studio). Goku, Gohan, Piccolo, Krillin, Goten, Trunks, Vegeta, and Shenron appear on the first promotional arts shown and the tagline revealed is The best, begins (最強、始動, Saikyō, Shidō), followed by "The world has eagerly-awaited. It's the most exciting like never before..." (全人類待望。かつてない興奮へー, Zen jinrui taibō. Katsute nai kōfune).
The official website also announced a comment by Akira Toriyama about the movie printed in Weekly Shōnen Jump #33: the Dragon Ball series creator notes that the adaptation will mark the first time he has been so deeply involved in the production of an anime, in this case as early as the screenwriting stages. Toriyama also says that the film will retain the atmosphere of the original while adding small amounts of "modern flavor." Toei Animation released a press statement on July 17, 2012:
"The global phenomenon Dragon Ball is being made into a movie using Toei Animation’s latest technology, consistently realized as a Toriyama work, with the original author Akira Toriyama himself deeply involved from the script stage for the first time. An episode from between the animation series “Z” and “GT”, or in other words from the blank decade between the end of the battle with Majin Buu in chapter 517 of the manga and chapter 518, will be depicted for the first time.
Such well-known and charming characters as Krillin, Piccolo, and Vegeta will all make an appearance. A new story in the official history of Dragon Ball is born, neither a spin-off nor a side-story, one that can be enjoyed by both children and parents, manga fans and anime fans."
On July 21, 2012, a short teaser trailer announcing the film was shown at the Saikyō V-Jump Festa: the camera drives through a rocky area towards Goku, who is standing on a rocky mountain. At the end, a close on Goku's face shows him smiling. Both Toriyama's comment and the teaser trailer were added to the official website in August 2012.
The funding of this movie costs ¥50 million ($636,000 USD) received by Toei from the Agency for Cultural Affairs (Bunka-cho) as part of the non-profit organization UNIJAPAN’s “Co-production Certification Program”. Of the four films awarded funding support, this movie was the only animated film to receive such an honor due to its “enduring international popularity” and its production collaboration with Fox.
During the 30th Prize Fair, which took place in Tokyo on November 7, 2012, Bandai showcased some of their new Dragon Ball figures for winter 2012, as well their World Collectable Figure line produced in conjunction with the 2013 movie. This latter covers characters that make an appearance in the 2013 movie: along with Vegeta and Super Saiyan 3 Goku, the three members of the Pilaf Gang were among the figures revealed. Those who pre-ordered a ticket to the movie also get a set of three Dragon Ball pens, with Set A including the Six-Star (pink), Seven-Star (orange), and One-Star balls (black) and Set B including the Two-Star (purple), Five-Star (green), and Three-Star balls (light blue). Buying pre-sale tickets gets a special QR code for use with Dragon Ball Heroes: Ultimate Mission (adding a boss battle against the God of Destruction Bills), a Dragon Ball Heroes theatrical limited-edition card, and the Four-Star Ball pen (red) and a Dragon Radar case to store all seven pens given at the theater. With the movie title revealed on November 2012, a special pre-sale Collaboration Ticket with the One Piece Z movie was made to commemorate the release of the two films. The dual-ticket good for both films has a special new illustration by both Eiichirō Oda (author of One Piece) and Akira Toriyama. Limited to 8,989 across Japan, the tickets went on sale on November 23, 2012, for ¥2,600 ($31.51 USD) apiece. Also, pre-sale tickets packed with special limited-edition items were sold in the Lawson and Mini Stop convenience-store chains: one pack included a Son Goku Mascot Ballpoint Pen for ¥2,160 (high school and up), ¥1,660 (age 3 to junior high), or ¥2,860 (parent-child pairs) and the other included a Shenron Room Light for ¥7,000 (high school and up), ¥6,500 (age 3 to junior high), or ¥7,700 (parent and child pair).
The film poster and the two new characters' names and Japanese voice actors were officially revealed on November 29, 2012, on Weekly Shōnen Jump scans. The film poster displays Super Saiyan Goku combating the God of Destruction Bills, with the mysterious Whis floating showered in light in the background. Various returning characters are also featured on the poster (Mr. Satan, Mr. Buu, Videl, the shrunken Pilaf Gang, Super Saiyan Goten, Super Saiyan Gohan, Super Saiyan Vegeta, Super Saiyan Trunks, Bulma, Piccolo, Tien Shinhan, Krillin, Yamcha and Puar). The first real trailer for the film was aired on Fuji TV on December 7, 2012, in the morning news/magazine show Mezamashi TV, as Toei started showing it at movie theaters.
"This time in particular, we had a request from sensei to leave in not only the action, but also some truly enjoyable... the truly enjoyable aspects of Dragon Ball; Dragon Ball's chaotic feeling, and the action of Gohan's battles and of the Z Fighters are mixed together very well, so I believe that has also helped make it an enjoyable movie."
A 30 minute Battle of Gods discussion panel was held at Jump Festa 2013; on the Jump Super Stage, on December 22, 2012. Along with the voice actors Masako Nozawa, Mayumi Tanaka, Toshio Furukawa, the film director Masahiro Hosoda, editor-in-chief Akio Iyoku, and Toei Animation producer Gyarmath Bogdan took part at the discussion which was overseen by former YBS TV announcer Mariko Nakagomi. Masako Nozawa read out a letter from Akira Toriyama saying he tried hard as personal revenge for the live-action film which was bad, and that he and the scriptwriters reworked the story a bunch of times. The character images Toriyama drew for the movie were displayed; he drew Android 18 with purple hair instead of blonde and he had to have this pointed out to him, he also forgot what Super Saiyan 2 and Super Saiyan 3 were and he was assuming that Super Saiyan 2 was something with long hair while he was making a sketch. As part of a collaboration with the Japanese J-League Division 1 football team Albirex Niigata, a special poster unveiled on the official Battle of Gods website in February 20, 2013, was displayed across Niigata Prefecture in promotion of their match on March 3, 2013, with the defending J-League Division 1 champions Sanfrecce Hiroshima. The poster is based on the official Battle of Gods poster, with the movie characters replaced by the football team's players: the figure in the background replacing Whis is the team's manager Masaaki Yanagishita, Bills has been replaced by the Sanfrecce Hiroshima goalkeeper Shūsaku Nishikawa, and Goku is replaced by the team's forward Bruno Lopes. In addition, all supporters at the match were emblazoned in orange, Goku made an "appearance" at the stadium, and the Dragon Ball Z theme song was used to rouse even more support. A team spokesman, along with the team's forwards Bruno Lopes and Tatsuya Tanaka, released comments about the collaboration and their adoration for the Dragon Ball series; Bruno Lopes, who is originally from Brazil and a noted big fan of the series, said that the series is still very popular in his homeland, so he is really happy and touched to be involved with it in Japan. "Battle of Gods SD", a special Dragon Ball SD chapter based on the early part of the film, was published in Saikyō Jump on March 4, 2013.
"We are very proud of having been able to partner with Akira Toriyama, a pioneer among manga creators, in bringing the first-ever Japanese film to IMAX Digital Theater screens. With its fast-paced action scenes and eye-popping visuals, we are certain that Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods will be perfect for the IMAX experience."
A live greeting by castmembers, followed by a preview screening of the film took place across Japan on Tuesday, March 12, 2013, with a limited number of attendees determined from a Jump lottery. The lottery tickets were included in 22 different Shueisha magazines (including Weekly Shōnen Jump, V-Jump, Jump SQ, and Ultra Jump) and 884 pairs (1768 people) were invited. There were five screenings, all the same day and at 6:30 p.m: Shinjuku Wald 9 cinema in Tokyo (428 people), Umeda Burg 7 theater in Osaka (440 people), 109 Cinemas in Nagoya (256 people), T-Joy Hakata in Fukuoka (322 people), and Sapporo Cinema Frontier in Sapporo (322 people). The special cast greeting at the Tokyo venue was beamed live to the other location before the screening. A second preview screening of the entire film, called "Tenkaichi Preview", took place at the Differ Ariake indoor sporting arena in Tokyo on March 16, 2013: the special event included an on-stage greeting with the special guests Masako Nozawa, the band FLOW, and a few others. The 250 pairs (500 people) invited to this second screening were determined with lottery tickets included in V-Jump, Weekly Jump, and Saikyō Jump, as well as 50 sets (100 tickets) given away to those that spend ¥10,500 (~$110) or more at the 109MEN'S clothing store in Tokyo from February 22, 2013 to March 3, 2013, with the winners randomly chosen (online purchases were also eligible to win tickets by entering the promo code "DBZ" at checkout, although only 10 of the 100 allotted tickets went toward purchases made online). Battle of Gods is also the first-ever Japanese film to be screened at IMAX Digital Theaters, screening at all 16 IMAX Digital Theater locations across Japan.
This film is stated to be several years after Kid Buu's defeat and several years before the 28th World Martial Arts Tournament, in Age 778 according to the 2013 exhibition The World of Dragon Ball. It also takes place after the events of the 2008 special Dragon Ball: Yo! Son Goku and His Friends Return!!, which is set two years after Kid Buu's defeat, as Bulma references Tarble, the younger brother of Vegeta who the Z Fighters and their friends met in the 2008 special.
|Character Name||Voice Actor (Japanese)|
|Tien Shinhan||Hikaru Midorikawa|
|Oracle Fish||Shōko Nakagawa|
|Emperor Pilaf||Shigeru Chiba|
|Master Roshi||Masaharu Satō|
|Android 18||Miki Itō|
|Marron||Tomiko Suzuki|
|Mr. Satan||Unshō Ishizuka|
|Mr. Buu||Kōzō Shioya|
|Dr. Brief||Jōji Yanami|
|Mrs. Brief||Yoko Kawanami|
|Sushi seller||Shinichi Karube|
|Kibito Kai||Yūji Mitsuya|
|King Kai/Narrator||Jōji Yanami|
- Original Author: Akira Toriyama
- Scenario: Yūsuke Watanabe
- Director: Masahiro Hosoda
- Music: Norihito Sumitomo
- Character design and animation director: Tadayoshi Yamamuro
- Art Director: Hiroshi Katō
- Color design: Teppei Horita
- Special Effects: Nao Ōta
- CG Director: Naoki Miyahara
- Production Supervisor: Kazumi Fujioka
- Production: Gyarmath Bogdan (Toei Animation)
- Trailer Music:
- Opening Theme (OP): "Cha-La Head-Cha-La" (FLOW version)
- Insertion Song (IN): "HERO - Song of Hope" by FLOW
- The film features the special guest voices Kaori Matsumoto (olympic gold-medalist judoka) and Shōko Nakagawa (gravure idol/singer/TV-personality). The Fuji TV announcer Shinichi Karube also has a part in the movie.
- The second trailer for the film and scans show Gohan as a Super Saiyan when he attacks Bills, but the actual film shows Gohan in his Ultimate state during those scenes. However, Gohan indeed appears as a Super Saiyan in the film, but only when the Saiyans gather their energy for Goku to turn Super Saiyan God.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Weekly Shōnen Jump #33, July 14, 2012
- ↑ Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods Official Movie Guide, 2013
- ↑ Yūsuke Watanabe interview, GetNavi, March 2013
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Tadayoshi Yamamuro interview, okstars.okwave.jp
- ↑ "I thought I would do a story where the enemy appears at a party on Earth when Goku is not there, and there would be big trouble. In the original plot, I wrote Krillin and Android 18's wedding, but in the story that came back from Toriyama-sensei, it had changed to Bulma's birthday party. I think, with regards to Krillin and Android 18's wedding, it is probably something that he wants all the fans to imagine for themselves." - Yūsuke Watanabe, DVD & Blu-ray Vision, issue #4, March 19, 2013
- ↑ Toei Animation's Press Release for the upcoming film - July 17, 2012, toei.co.jp
- ↑ "New Dragon Ball Z Film Gets 50 million Yen Support from Japanese Government", crunchyroll.com
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Weekly Shōnen Jump, first February 2013 issue
- ↑ V-Jump, issue #5, 2013
- ↑ Weekly Young Jump, issue #5/6, 2013
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 V-Jump, issue #3, 2013
- ↑ Dragon Ball 2013 official website, IMAX Digital Theater section
- ↑ FLOW official website
- ↑ Dragon Ball 2013 official website, News section
- ↑ "Battle of Gods" Mezamashi TV Promotion
- Shōnen Jump countdown page
- Dragon Ball 2013 official website
- Toei Animation's Dragon Ball 2013 official page
- Battle of Gods merchandising at plaza.rakuten.co.jp