Alongside Fairy Tail‘s Hiro Mashima and Soul Eater author Atsusi Okubo teaming up for a special conversation and crossover art in the June 1st issue of Weekly Shonen Magazine, a “big announcement” has been teased for Hikaru Katsuki’s tennis manga Baby Steps. No other details were given in Kodansha’s magazine preview, but Japanese fans have been reporting on Twitter that they’d spotted extras being filmed and cast for a live-action adaptation of Baby Steps as far back as March.
Katsuki launched his Kodansha Award-winning manga in Weekly Shonen Magazine in 2007, and it was later developed as a 25-episode anime which premiered in April 2014. This was followed up by a second series of equal length in April 2015, and Katsuki collaborated on both in the creation of original stories specifically for the anime. Crunchyroll streamed both series as new episodes aired in Japan, and they give them the following summary:
… Baby Steps centers on a honor student named Eiichiro Maruo who becomes frustrated with his life and decides to join the tennis club. Despite lacking experience and physical strength, he utilizes his studious nature to develop a strategic approach to playing tennis. Taking notes of his opponents’ habits and tendencies, he is able to predict their next move before they even react. He also meets Natsu Takasaki, a beautiful girl with a passion for tennis. With her help, he aims to become a professional tennis player.
Update: Amazon Japan is now displaying the cover of the June 1st issue of Weekly Shonen Magazine, and it reveals that Hikaru Katsuki’s Baby Steps manga is being adapted as a live-action drama.