How did Haim Saban and Shuki Levy came across Super Sentai anyway? And in your personal opinion, how do you think of their personal impact on the Toku scene?
The story goes that Haim Saban was on a business trip to Japan when he saw Super Sentai on the TV. This was in the late 1980s I believe and it gave him the idea to adapt it for American television as it would be an easily marketable property with pre-existing merchandise. He was not the first to get that idea as Stan Lee once wanted to do something similar back in the early 1980s when Marvel Comics still had a deal with Toei. Sadly, nothing came of that arrangement Super Sentai wise, at least in the US.
Super Sentai first aired on US TV thanks to USA Network’s 1980s program Night Flight, which included a comedic parody dub of 1983′s Kagaku Sentai Dynaman.
Power Rangers was the first truly successful adaptation, though it did its best to scour away Japanese cultural references and make it appear to be an American series. Of course, the massive differences in the film used (actual film stock for the Japanese footage vs cheaper video source for the American) gave away the cut and paste nature of finished product. This has gotten much better over the years and Toei itself switched to Digital Video as opposed to film stock in the intervening years.
As for the impact on the Tokusatsu scene, it meant more money for Toei to use as Saban funded not only new footage for use in Power Rangers (the Zyu2 footage). There was a lot of co-production between the two later on with Toei making the shows with adaptation in mind for a lot of them. It also created greater exposure in countries that had never gotten the Japanese series and sparked fans (such as myself) to seek out the original source material. I honestly feel tokusatsu fandom in general and Super Sentai fandom in particular would not be anywhere near as big as it is today without Power Rangers.