Interest Level-5 CEO Wants Greater International Push for Yo-kai Watch
posted on 2016-01-09 19:45 EST by Eric Stimson
Level-5, the developer of the Yōkai Watch video game, held an event on January 8 at Tokyo's Kanda Shrine to pray for the success of its new film, Eiga Yo-kai Watch: Enma Daioh to Itsutsu no Monogatari da Nyan! Akihiro Hino, its president and CEO, was in attendance (along with 21 Yōkai Watch characters) and delivered some remarks on the movie's success at the Japanese box office and his plans for further expansion.
The Yōkai Watch film has beaten Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens in its first two weekends in ticket sales. "Personally, I'm a Star Wars fan, so I have mixed feelings, but it's an honor to contend with a monstrously large movie like that, and I think it's a heroic feat to make something that put up such a good fight," Hino said. "I'd like to develop [Yōkai Watch] more into a property that can take on the world."
When asked about his intentions regarding Hollywood, Hino said "I'd like to make it so that it's a big hit overseas too, and Hollywood is one of my targets. I'd like to do my best to push it forward." He then reflected on how Yōkai Watch had boomed in its first year beyond his expectations, and reiterated his interest in advancing the franchise in the year to come. "There are many ways, and we're thinking of new media outlets," he stated.
Yōkai Watch is currently airing on Disney XD in the United States and on Teletoon in Canada. A Japanese business journalist claimed in September that Yōkai Watch was struggling due to distribution and compatibility problems.