Dragon Ball (ドラゴンボール, Doragon Bōru) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Akira Toriyama. It was serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump from 1984 through 1995, and its 519 individual chapters were published into 42 tankōbon volumes by Shueisha. Inspired by the Chinese folk novel Journey to the West, it follows the adventures of its lead character, Son Goku from his childhood into old age. The manga series is licensed for an English language release in North America by Viz Media, in the United Kingdom by Gollancz Manga, and in Australia and New Zealand by Chuang Yi.
Dragon Ball has since been adapted into three different anime series, seventeen animated feature films, three television specials, a collectible trading card game, and a large number of video games. A live-action film has been in development since 2002, and is now slated for release on April 10, 2009.