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2 Pokémon Feature Films to Open on Same Day in July

posted on by Egan Loo
1st anime franchise with 2 feature-length films opening on same day

Two feature-length Pokémon anime films will open in Japan on July 16 instead of the usual one feature-length film with an anime short. According to the Nikkan Sports newspaper, this is the first time that two feature-length Japanese animated films from the same franchise have opened on the same day. In addition to the previously announced Gekijōban Pocket Monster Best Wishes! Victini to Kuroki Eiyū Zekrom, there will also be a second feature called Gekijōban Pocket Monster Best Wishes! Victini to Shiroki Eiyū Reshiram. The same theaters will show both films, one after another.

In the story of the two films, the protagonist Satoshi (Ash in English) and his Pokémon creature Pikachu take part in a battle held during the harvest festival in Aintoōku, and they encounter the mysterious Pokémon Victini. The two films will also feature two different legendary Pokémon — the black hero Zekrom appears before people who seek the pure "ideal," while the white hero Reshiram appears before people who seek the pure "truth." Not incidentally, these two are pivotal Pokémon in the latest games in the franchise, Pokémon Black and White. They also appeared as miniature floats at last year's 84th Annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.

Pokémon anime feature films have often opened in theaters with an anime short, similar to how American Pixar films have often opened in theaters with an animated short. However, the two Pokémon films that will open in July are both feature-length. The last time that Japanese theaters opened two features from the same franchise on the same day was in 2009, when the live-action franchise Ju-on (The Grudge) marked its 10th anniversary with Ju-on: Shiroi Rōjo and Ju-on: Kuroi Shōjo.

Update: According to the official website, there will also be two Pikachu the Movie shorts accompanying the two feature films.

Image © Nintendo, Creatures, GAME FREAK, TV Tokyo, Sho-Pro, JR Kikaku © Pokémon © 2011 Pikachu Project

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