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Japanese Releases


A resurgence of interest in the Dragon Ball series’ began in Japan in the early 2000s, and amid a re-release of the manga in a kanzenban (“Perfect Edition”) format, Toei Animation announced they would be releasing the TV series’ in DVD box sets called “Dragon Boxes”. Unlike many countries around the world, which had been releasing the TV series’ on either VHS or DVD for years, Japan had no proper home video release. Up until this point, the only Dragon Ball properties released in Japan were the movies, which were available on VHS and LaserDisc. Several new series and films have since been released following the “Dragon Boxes”, pushing the franchise into the age of high-definition.

Dragon Box Releases

Beginning in 2003, Toei Animation, in cooperation with the DVD manufacturing company Pony Canyon, began releasing a series of four box sets in Japan covering the entire Dragon Ball TV series property, which were dubbed the “Dragon Boxes”. By mid-2005, all three TV series had been released, although out of chronological order, which marked the first time that any of these properties were available on a home video format in Japan. In 2006 Toei Animation dropped Pony Canyon and released all of the Dragon Ball movie properties in the fifth and final Dragon Box.

The Dragon Boxes were limited items in the truest sense of the word. An order start date would be announced several months in advance, as well as an order deadline. The ordering windows were typically several months in length, and all manufacturing of the box sets were based solely on the number of orders received. In other words, they only made enough boxes to satisfy the orders made within the given timelines, after which point production on the boxes ended indefinitely. With so few actual Dragon Boxes in circulation (most of which already in the loving arms of Dragon Ball fans), it makes finding these boxes nowadays somewhat difficult.

This limited-production DVD box set contains Dragon Ball episodes 001 through 153 (complete series), plus bonus features. Although Dragon Ball is the first series chronologically, this was actually the third DVD set in the Dragon Box series, following both Dragon Box Z volumes.

Release Information

Released:07 July 2004
Retail:¥105,000
Catalog Number:PCBC-50482
Manufacturer:Pony Canyon
Discs:26 discs
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

This limited-production DVD box set contains Dragon Ball Z episodes 001 through 147, plus bonus features. Although Dragon Ball Z is the second series chronologically, the Dragon Box DVD series was actually launched with Dragon Ball Z, making this the very first Dragon Box release.

Release Information

Released:19 March 2003
Retail:¥100,000
Catalog Number:PCBC-50368
Manufacturer:Pony Canyon
Discs:25 discs + 1 special disc
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

This limited-production DVD box set contains Dragon Ball Z episodes 148 through 291 (series finale), plus bonus features. Although Dragon Ball Z is the second series chronologically, the Dragon Box DVD series was actually launched with Dragon Ball Z, making this the second Dragon Box release.

Release Information

Released:18 September 2003
Retail:¥100,000
Catalog Number:PCBC-50369
Manufacturer:Pony Canyon
Discs:24 discs + 2 special discs
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

This limited-production DVD box set contains Dragon Ball GT episodes 01 through 64 (complete series), plus bonus features. Due to the amount of pre-orders put in for this box being much higher than Toei had anticipated, its release was actually delayed to meet the demand.

Release Information

Released:15 June 2005
Retail:¥52,500
Catalog Number:PCBC-50657
Manufacturer:Pony Canyon
Discs:11 discs + 1 special disc
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

This limited-production DVD box set contains Dragon Ball theatrical movies 01 through 17 (complete theatrical release schedule), plus bonus features. Although almost all of the material in this box set pre-dates Dragon Ball GT, this was actually the fifth and final box to be released.

Release Information

Released:14 April 2006
Retail:¥52,500
Catalog Number:DSTD-02536
Manufacturer:Toei Video
Discs:8 discs
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

Individual Dragon Box Disc Releases

Following the release of the TV series Dragon Boxes, Toei announced the release of their individual discs, giving fans that didn’t own the Dragon Boxes a chance to own these properties. Unfortunately, these individual discs wouldn’t contain any of the extras that came with the Dragon Boxes, but instead special diorama sets were created exclusively for those that purchased all of the individual discs. Following this, individual discs for all of the movie properties were also released.

These individual DVD releases contain Dragon Ball episodes 001 through 153 (complete series) as originally presented on the series’ respective Dragon Box.

Release Information

Released:04 April 2007 – 05 December 2007
Discs:01-26 (26 individual volumes)
Retail:¥3,800 (+ tax)
Catalog Number:PCBC-51141 to PCBC-51166
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

These individual DVD releases contain Dragon Ball Z episodes 001 through 291 (complete series) as originally presented on the series’ respective Dragon Box.

Release Information

Released:02 November 2005 – 07 February 2007
Discs:01-49 (49 individual volumes)
Retail:¥3,800 (+ tax)
Catalog Number:PCBC-50781 to PCBC-50829
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

These individual DVD releases contain Dragon Ball GT episodes 01 through 64 (complete series) as originally presented on the series’ respective Dragon Box.

Release Information

Released:06 February 2008 – 04 June 2008
Discs:01-11 (11 individual volumes)
Retail:¥3,800 (+ tax)
Catalog Number:PCBC-51311 to PCBC-51321
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

These individual DVD releases contain Dragon Ball theatrical movies 01 through 17 (complete theatrical release schedule) as originally presented on “Dragon Box The Movies”.

Release Information

Released:08 August 2008 – 13 February 2009
Discs:01-17 (17 individual volumes)
Retail:¥2,800 (+ tax)
Catalog Number:PCBC-07851 to PCBC-07867
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

Dragon Ball Kai Releases

In early 2009, Toei Animation announced that a “refreshed” version of the Dragon Ball Z TV series, re-titled Dragon Ball Kai, was being produced for a high-definition (HD) presentation in honor of its 20th anniversary. This was the first time that any Dragon Ball property would be released on high-definition Blu-ray, bringing Dragon Ball into the digital age. Visit the “Episode Guide” for more information about Dragon Ball Kai.

These individual DVD releases contain Dragon Ball Kai episodes 01 through 98 presented in widescreen.

Release Information

Released:18 September 2009 – 02 August 2011
Discs:01-33 (33 individual volumes)
Retail:¥2,800 (+ tax)
Catalog Number:BIBA-7811 to BIBA-7843
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

These Blu-ray box set releases contain Dragon Ball Kai episodes 01 through 98, plus bonus features. Each box set came with a “Dragon Book” highlighting the respective box set’s contents and often included exclusive interviews with the series’ staff and cast.

Release Information

Released:18 September 2009 – 02 August 2011
Box Sets:1-8 (8 box sets + 1 volume; varying discs per box set)
Retail:¥15,200 (+ tax); ¥13,980 (+ tax)
Catalog Number:BIXA-1020; BIXA-9321 to BIXA-9328
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

These Blu-ray box set releases contain the “Majin Boo arc” of Dragon Ball Kai, plus bonus features. Each box set came with a “Dragon Book” highlighting the respective box set’s contents and often included exclusive interviews with the series’ staff and cast.

Release Information

Released:02 September 2014 – 02 September 2015
Box Sets:1-5
Retail:¥15,200 (Blu-ray) / ¥11,200 (DVD)
Catalog Number:Various
Video Format:16:9 Widescreen

“Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods” Releases

Toei Animation announced in mid-2012 that a new Dragon Ball Z theatrical film, the first the franchise had seen in 17 years, was in production and would be hitting Japanese theaters in early 2013. The film’s production, character designs, and general plot were overseen by original author Akira Toriyama, who had very little involvement with previous films. On 30 March 2013, Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods was released in theaters nationwide, where it would stay for a scheduled six week run and gross roughly ¥3 billion. Following its theatrical run the film was released on both DVD and Blu-ray, with each format receiving a standard and limited edition release.

This limited edition box set release contains the “Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods” feature, plus bonus features, a postcard set of all 18 theatrical films, and a “Super Saiyan God” three-dimensional wall figure.

Release Information

Released:13 September 2013
Discs:2 discs
Retail:¥9,240 (Blu-ray) / ¥8,190 (DVD)
Catalog Number:BSTD-03685 (Blu-ray) / DSTD-03685 (DVD)
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

Standard EditionBlu-ray / DVD
This standard edition release contains the “Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods” feature, plus bonus features.

Release Information

Released:13 September 2013
Discs:1 individual disc
Retail:¥5,040 (Blu-ray) / ¥3,990 (DVD)
Catalog Number:BSTD-03677 (Blu-ray) / DSTD-03677 (DVD)
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

Special EditionBlu-ray / DVD
This DVD & Blu-ray release contains the “Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods” special extended edition feature as originally broadcast on Fuji TV, plus bonus features, and an exclusively drawn postcard in promotion of the 2015 film, “Dragon Ball Z: Revival of ‘F'”.

Release Information

Released:13 March 2015
Discs:1 disc
Retail:¥5,184 (Blu-ray) / ¥4,104 (DVD)
Catalog Number:BSTD-03790 (Blu-ray) / DSTD-03790 (DVD)
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

“Dragon Ball Z: Revival of ‘F'” Releases

Following up with the success of Battle of Gods, Toei Animation soon announced a sequel in mid-July 2014. The film, titled Dragon Ball Z: Revival of “F”, would once again be written and supervised by original author Akira Toriyama, and revive one of the series’ most notorious villains. As the film made its way across the globe following its “Golden Week” premiere in Japan on 18 April 2015, a home video release was announced on both DVD and Blu-ray, with each format receiving a standard and limited edition release.

Special Limited Edition BoxBlu-ray / DVD
This limited edition box set release contains the “Dragon Ball Z: Revival of ‘F'” feature, plus bonus features, a 498-page story board collection, a 16-page special booklet, and a “Golden Freeza” original alarm clock.

Release Information

Released:07 October 2015
Discs:2 discs
Retail:¥8,800 (Blu-ray) / ¥7,800 (DVD)
Catalog Number:BSTD-03851 (Blu-ray) / DSTD-03851 (DVD)
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

Standard EditionBlu-ray / DVD
This standard edition release contains the “Dragon Ball Z: Revival of ‘F'” feature, plus bonus features.

Release Information

Released:07 October 2015
Discs:1 individual disc
Retail:¥4,800 (Blu-ray) / ¥3,800 (DVD)
Catalog Number:BSTD-03850 (Blu-ray) / DSTD-03850 (DVD)
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

Dragon Ball Super Releases

In early 2015, following the success of the franchise’s most recent films (Battle of Gods and Revival of “F”), Toei Animation announced that the production of an all-new TV series was underway with the story and characters being developed by original manga author Akira Toriyama. The series was announced to, “…follow the aftermath of Goku’s fierce battle with Majin Boo, as he attempts to maintain earth’s fragile peace.” Visit the “Episode Guide” for more information about Dragon Ball Super.

These box set releases contain episodes of Dragon Ball Super, plus bonus features. Each box set came with a “Dragon Book” highlighting the respective box set’s contents and often included exclusive interviews with the series’ staff and cast.

Release Information

Released:02 December 2015 – ongoing
Discs:01-ongoing
Retail:¥15,200 (Blu-ray) / ¥11,200 (DVD)
Catalog Number(s):Various
Video Format:16:9 Widescreen

Other Releases

In 2009, Shueisha released the Dragon Ball “Jump Super Anime Tour” Special through a limited mail-in order. Unlike the Dragon Boxes, the process for ordering this DVD was much more complex and limited. Anyone in the world was allowed to order any of the Dragon Boxes as long as the order was placed before the deadline ended. However, this DVD release was restricted to those living within Japan and Shueisha even went so far as to specifically note that orders from outside of Japan would not be accepted.

Later in 2011, Shueisha released both Dragon Ball Z TV specials which were previously only available through the limited Dragon Box releases. Unlike the Dragon Ball “Jump Super Anime Tour” Special DVD, this release was easily obtainable through most online retailers to those outside of Japan. Interestingly, the DVD contained some great bonus material that was not included with the Dragon Boxes.

In March 2012, the recently relaunched Saikyō Jump’s March 2012 issue came packed with a bonus DVD that contained Episode of Bardock (debuted the prior December at Jump Festa and subsequently streamed online), as well as Plan to Eradicate the Super Saiyans (originally included as a part of the Raging Blast 2 video game and also streamed online exclusively in Japan).

This mail-in order DVD release contains the “Dragon Ball – Heya! Son Goku and Friends Return!!” Jump Super Anime Tour feature, plus bonus features.

Release Information

Released:April 2009
Discs:1 individual disc
Retail:¥1,524 (+ tax)
Catalog Number:SDVD-014187
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox

Dragon Ball Z Special Selection DVDDVD
This DVD release contains both Dragon Ball Z TV specials, plus bonus features. It also marks the first time these TV specials were readily available in Japan outside of their inclusion on the Dragon Box Z sets.

Release Information

Released:05 August 2011
Discs:1 individual disc
Retail:¥1,000
ISBN:4-08-908141-9
Video Format:4:3 Standard Size

Dragon Ball Saikyō Jump Bonus DVDDVD
This DVD release contains both Episode of Bardock as well as Plan to Eradicate the Super Saiyans. It also marks the first time these specials were available in any standard home format (with the latter being previously available on the Raging Blast 2 video game).

Release Information

Released:03 February 2012
Discs:1 individual disc
Retail:¥480
ASIN:B006ZNF4P2
Video Format:16:9 Letterbox