Magic Tree House Novel Sells 20 Times Faster Due to Anime
posted on by Egan Loo
Mary Pope Osborne's first Magic Tree House novel has been flying off store shelves 20 times faster in Japan this month, thanks to the January 7 release of the Magic Tree House anime film. The American novel series and the Japanese animated film revolve around Jack and Annie, two siblings who go on adventures throughout time with a mysterious tree house.
Even though Media Factory published the first novel, Dinosaurs Before Dark, a decade ago in 2002 in Japan, it ranked No. 3 on Kinokuniya Bookstores' bestseller list for children's books in the first week of the new year. In addition, the 31st and 25th volumes were in the top 10. (Worldwide, the entire novel series has sold about 100 million copies.)
Last month, Dinosaurs Before Dark was selling at about 10.4 times the rate it did one year earlier. So far this month, the novel has been selling 20 times the rate. Since the end of last October, the total number of copies sold has almost doubled. (The trailer for the Magic Tree House anime film began running at the end of October.)
As of January 15, the film has sold 234,000 tickets and earned 260 million yen (about US$3.34 million) in nine days. It ranked No. 3 at the Japanese box office in its first weekend, and then No. 4 in the second weekend.
Hiroshi Nishikiori (Azumanga Daioh, Toaru Majutsu no Index) directed the film off a screenplay written by Ichiro Okouchi (Code Geass, Azumanga Daioh, Negima!). Yoshiaki Yanagida (Genshiken, Spirit of Wonder) designed the characters and supervised the animation process. Actress Keiko Kitagawa (live-action Sailor Moon, live-action Paradise Kiss) played Jack, while Mana Ashida (live-action Bunny Drop) played Annie. Miki Maya (Takarazuka Revue, live-action Absolute Boyfriend) voices Morgan, the enigmatic woman who owns the Magic Tree House.