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Yo-kai Watch Film Beats Out Disney's Big Hero 6 at Japanese Box Office

posted on 2014-12-22 19:00 EST
Film sets TOHO record with 1,484,916 tickets sold

The movie data firm Kōgyō Tsūshin reported on Monday that the Yo-kai Watch: Tanjō no Himitsu da Nyan! (Yo-kai Watch the Movie: It's the Secret of Birth, Meow!) anime film opened this past weekend at #1 in the Japanese box office, ahead of Disney's Big Hero 6. The Yo-kai Watch film sold a record 1,484,916 tickets for 1,628,893,000 yen (about US$13.58 million) for TOHO. The same film previously broke records for the most advanced tickets sold for a TOHO film. Big Hero 6 ranked #2 with 463,556 tickets for 600,410,500 yen (about US$5 million) on 540 screens.

The story revolves around Keita when he returns to his grandmother's village to discover clues behind his missing Yokai Watch which allows him to see supernatural creatures — both good and evil — that he could not see before in everyday life. The search sends Keita back in time 60 years to save his grandfather, Keizo.

The film stars Haruka Tomatsu as Keita Amano, Tomokazu Seki as Whisper, Etsuko Kozakura as Jibanyan, and Yuuki Kaji as Fuyunyan. Other cast members include Tohru Nara as Kuma, Aya Endo as Fumika Kodama, and Chie Satou as Kanchi Imada. Guest stars include AKB48 member Haruka Shimazaki as Yukippe, kabuki actor Ainosuke Kataoka as Ubaune, and actor and comedian Ken Shimura as Master Nyaada. Yoichi Kato provided the script for the film, while Ken'ichirō Saigō composed the soundtrack. Oriental Light and Magic animated the film.

Game developer Level-5 announced the Yokai Watch franchise in 2011 with a game, manga, and anime already planned. The franchise's first game for the Nintendo 3DS debuted in Japan in July 2013, and two versions of the Yo-kai Watch 2 3DS game shipped in July. A third version titled Yo-kai Watch 2: Shinuchi (Yo-kai Watch 2: Headliner) shipped on December 13, andties in to the film. The anime premiered this past January. The manga has four volumes that have sold 1.5 million copies.

The franchise's related books, toys, and other products are top sellers in Japan this year.

Dentsu Entertainment USA is offering the anime to broadcast and merchandising partners in the Americas. Level-5 president Akihiro Hino announced on Saturday that the series will be broadcast overseas.

The live-action film of Io Sakisaka's Blue Spring Ride (Ao Haru Ride) romance manga dropped from #1 to #3, THE LAST -NARUTO THE MOVIE- fell from #2 to #6, Parasyte dropped from #6 to #8, Kamen Rider Gaim x Kamen Rider Drive Yoroi Movie: Daisen Full Throttle dropped from #4 to #9, and the Aikatsu anime film dropped from #5 to #10.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter, Cinema Today via Yara-On!


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