Lupin III: The Plot of the Fuma Clan is the first original video animation (OVA) of the Lupin III franchise. Released in late 1987, this is the first Lupin animated project to not feature Yasuo Yamada as Lupin III, who is instead voiced by Toshio Furukawa, and the only one to not feature Kiyoshi Kobayashi as Daisuke Jigen.
Due to budget concerns, TMS decided not to employ the regular voice cast for the OVA, instead going for a slightly less-expensive yet still well-known Aoni Production cast.When the news was broken to Yasuo Yamada, it was not made clear who was responsible for the dismissal, leaving him with the impression that Lupin III's creator Monkey Punchhad lobbied the producers for a new voice actor. In reality, Monkey Punch was happy with Yamada's portrayal, but felt that he had no business in telling the production company what to do. Monkey Punch tried to reassure Yamada (with whom he had developed a friendship during the years of Lupin TV series) that he had nothing to do with it, and the regulars were reinstated with the first television special, Bye-Bye Liberty - Close Call!. However, the relationship between Yamada and Monkey Punch was permanently strained by the casting substitution.
The budget focused on the animation. In the background, the characters have a very distinct style, which is not usual in anime, but more common in Western cartoons. Before working on this movie, Telecom Animation Film had done projects in the West, such as "Tiny Toon Adventures." Two of their employees were Hayao Miyazaki and Yasuo Ōtsuka, who is the supervisor of this film. Lupin's cars are based on the vehicles owned by Hayao Miyazaki, a Citroen 2CV, and Yasuo Ōtsuka, a Fiat 500. By using their own cars as models, they were able to keep the animation consistent throughout production.
The story is located in Japan, so the production staff could easily research the locations and props. For example, the treasure cave mountain is based on a real location in the Gifu Prefecture: Mt Shakujo, as well as the local spa's rotemburo, an outdoor soaking pool, used in the police chase