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Japanese Box Office, February 18-19

posted on by Crystalyn Hodgkins
Live-action Afro Tanaka debuts at #10, Always: Sunset on Third Street '64 drops to #3

Always: Sunset on Third Street '64, the third live-action film based on Ryohei Saigan's nostalgic San-chōme no Yūhi - Yūyake no Uta manga directed by Takashi Yamazaki (live-action Space Battleship Yamato, Returner, Ballad) dropped from No. 2 to No. 3 during its fifth weekend. The original manga, a 1990-1991 television anime series adaptation, and the first two live-action films followed the lives of people in a Tokyo neighborhood as the iconic Tokyo Tower rises above them. The film earned US$1,828,431 on 473 screens for a new total of US$36,775,563.

Takashi Miike's live-action adaptation of Capcom's Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (Gyakuten Saiban) video game franchise fell from No. 5 to No. 7 in its second weekend. The film takes place in a parallel Japan, where a large increase in harsh crimes has led to a new court system. Under this new system, the defense attorney and public prosecutor have three days to battle cases out in open court to determine guilt or innocence of the accused, placing priority on speed instead of thorough investigation. The film earned US$919,466 on 275 screens for a new total of US$3,727,646.

Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger vs. Space Sheriff Gavan: The Movie, the newest live-action Super Sentai film, dropped from No. 7 to No. 9 during its fifth weekend. The film is related to the Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger live-action television series, which Toei began airing as Super Sentai's 35th anniversary show last February. The film differs from the previous three Super Sentai VS films because it is a crossover with the Space Sheriff Gavan live-action special effects series. The film ranked at No. 10 on Box Office Mojo's chart and earned US$336,846 on 257 screens for a gross-to-date of US$6,373,744.

The live-action film adaptation of Masaharu Noritsuke's Afro Tanaka comedy manga debuted at No. 10. Shota Matsuda (Liar Game, Hana Yori Dango [2005]) stars as an odd, Afro-haired young man named Hiroshi Tanaka who faces his greatest challenge at the age of 24: his first potential girlfriend (live-action Sazae-san special and Kaitō Royale's Nozomi Sasaki). The film ranked at No. 9 on Box Office Mojo's chart and earned US$437,051 on 72 screens.

The live-action film adaptation of Hikaru Nakamura's Arakawa Under the Bridge manga fell from No. 11 to No. 12 in its third weekend. In the story, an upper-class young man named Ko "Riku" Ichinomiya (Kento Hayashi) meets a beautiful homeless girl named Nino (Mirei Kiritani) from the banks of Arakawa River, where many of Tokyo's most unusual denizens live. The film earned US$272,755 on 170 screens for a new total of US$2,569,990.

The second documentary of the Akihabara based J-Pop group AKB48, titled Documentary of AKB48: Show Must Go On Shōjo-tachi wa Kizutsuki Nagara, Yume wo Miru, fell from No. 12 to No. 14 during its fourth weekend. The film follows the members of AKB48 through the year 2011. NEW PEOPLE Entertainment released the previous Documentary of AKB48 -- To Be Continued on DVD in December. The film earned US$262,209 on 93 screens for a new total of US$3,984,152.

Berserk Ōgon Jidai-Hen I: Haō no Tamago (Berserk Golden Age Arc I: Egg of the Supreme Ruler), the first film in the three-part retelling of the Golden Age arc of Kentaro Miura's manga fell from Box Office Mojo's chart during its third weekend.

Sources: Kogyo Tsushinsha, Box Office Mojo

This article has a follow-up: Japanese Box Office, February 25-26 (2012-03-09 19:00)
follow-up of Japanese Box Office, February 11-12
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