Cover of the first volume of Dragon Zakura manga
|Written by||Mita Norifusa|
|Original run||2003 – 2007|
Dragon Zakura (Japanese: ドラゴン桜? Hepburn: Doragon Zakura) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Norifusa Mita. Serialized in Weekly Morning from 2003 to 2007, it was released into 21 tankōbon by Kodansha between October 22, 2003, and August 23, 2007. It was adapted into live action television series of the same name broadcast on TBS in 2005.
A sequel titled Angel Bank: Dragon Zakura Gaiden (エンゼルバンク-ドラゴン桜外伝-? Enzerubanku -Doragon Zakura Gaiden-) was published in the same magazine between 2007 and 2010. It was compiled into 14 tankōbon released by Kodansha between January 23, 2008, and August 23, 2010.
Kenji Sakuragi is a poor lawyer and ex-motorcycle gang member looking for an opportunity to boost his career. His chance finally comes with the nearly bankrupt and notorious Ryuuzan High School, universally referred to as "baka gakkou" (stupid school). There, he sets up a special class that aims to prepare five students to pass the entrance exam of University of Tokyo, which is the finest university in Japan.
The manga has sold over 6 million copies, and won the 2005 Kodansha Manga Award for general manga. It also won an Excellence Prize at the 2005 Japan Media Arts Festival, with the jury saying, "The theme is not new, the composition is somewhat orthodox and it is true that there was criticism of the drawing skill. However, the story is told with such great conviction and pathos that these weaknesses are easily overlooked. It is a very entertaining manga, which is probably the most important thing."
The manga has been adapted into a Japanese television drama series of the same name and also into a 2010 South Korean television drama series titled Master of Study. It will also be adapted into a Chinese internet television drama series.
- ドラゴン桜（1） (in Japanese). Norifusa Mita official site. Retrieved August 2, 2014.
- ドラゴン桜（21） (in Japanese). Norifusa Mita official site. Retrieved August 2, 2014.
- 金曜ドラマ「ドラゴン桜」 (in Japanese). TBS. Archived from the original on November 24, 2005. Retrieved August 2, 2014.
- エンゼルバンク ドラゴン桜外伝（1） (in Japanese). Kodansha. Retrieved August 2, 2014.
- エンゼルバンク ドラゴン桜外伝（14）. Kodansha (in Japanese). Retrieved August 2, 2014.
- Ohara, Atsushi (September 3, 2013). "'Dragon Zakura' comic to be remade in Indonesia to meet local needs". Asahi Shimbun. Retrieved February 10, 2014.
- Joel Hahn. "Kodansha Manga Awards". Comic Book Awards Almanac. Archived from the original on 2007-08-16. Retrieved 2007-08-21.
- "Excellence Prize: Dragon Zakura". Japan Media Arts Plaza, Agency for Cultural Affairs. Archived from the original on December 18, 2007. Retrieved August 2, 2014.
- "Chinese Company Plans Live-Action Dramas Based on Dragon Zakura, Other Manga". Anime News Network. December 1, 2015. Retrieved December 2, 2015.