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The Prince of Tennis (テニスの王子様, Tenisu no Ōjisama) is a Japanese shōnen manga series written and illustrated by Takeshi Konomi. The title is often shortened to TeniPuri (テニプリ), a portmanteau of the two parts in the Japanese pronunciation of the words "Tennis Prince". The manga was first published in Japan in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump in July 1999, and ended publication on March 3, 2008. A total of 379 chapters were serialized, spanning 42 volumes. The new manga series, entitled New Prince of Tennis, began serialization in the Jump Square magazine on March 4, 2009, with the story taking place several months after the end of the original manga. Viz Media acquired the license to distribute the series in English in North America.
The manga was adapted into an anime series directed by Takayuki Hamana, animated by Trans Arts and co-produced by Nihon Ad Systems & TV Tokyo. The anime aired across Japan on the anime satellite television network Animax and the terrestrial TV Tokyo network from October 10, 2001 to March 30, 2005, spanning a total of 178 episodes, as well as a theatrical movie. In April 2006, an original video animation (OVA) continuation of the anime began to be released on DVD. The beginning of the second OVA series was released on June 22, 2007, roughly 3 months after the end of the first. The second OVA ended on January 25, 2008, and the third and final OVA started on April 25, 2008. The series developed into a media franchise and has had numerous other adaptations outside of the animated incarnation. Since April 2003, more than fifteen stage musicals have been produced for the series. An animated movie was released in 2005, as well as a live action movie in 2006.The franchise has also had a long running radio show, numerous video games, soundtracks, and other merchandise or collectibles.
The series is primarily set in Tokyo, and centers around Ryoma Echizen, a tennis prodigy who attends Seishun Academy (青春学園, Seishun Gakuen), or Seigaku (青学) for short, a private school famous for its strong tennis club and talented players. Ryoma quickly defeats numerous upperclassmen shortly after entrance to secure himself a spot as one of the team's regulars. In pursuit of their ultimate goal of winning the National Middle School Tennis Championship, members of the team make new friends while learning and mastering increasingly complex techniques. Ryoma also begins to develop his own style of tennis, and eventually realizes what the sport really means to him.