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Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window Anime Film Opens at #6

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Kitarō Tanjō: Gegege no Nazo stays at #3 in 4th weekend

Image via Kitarō Tanjō: Gegege no Nazo anime film's website
The Kitarō Tanjō: Gegege no Nazo (Kitarō Birth: The Mystery of Gegege) anime film stayed at #3 in its fourth weekend. The film sold 166,300 tickets, and earned 248,932,300 yen (about US$1.70 million) from Friday to Sunday. The film has sold 810,000 tickets and earned a cumulative total of 1,150,040,030 yen (about US$7.89 million).

The film opened in Japan last November 17 and sold 111,500 tickets and earned 160,106,620 yen (about US$1.07 million) in its first three days.

Gō Koga (Gegege no Kitarō: Nippon Bakuretsu!!, One Piece Episode of Sabo) directed the film at Toei Animation, and Hiroyuki Yoshino (Macross Frontier, World Trigger, 13 episodes in 2018 GeGeGe no Kitarō) wrote the screenplay. Tōko Yatabe (2018 GeGeGe no Kitarō's third ending sequence unit director, Evangelion: 3.0+1.0: Thrice Upon A Time assistant director) designed the characters. The main cast includes Toshihiko Seki as Kitarō's father, who would eventually become Medama Oyaji, and Hidenobu Kikuchi as Mizuki, a salaryman who heads to a cursed village under secret orders.

The film is part of four "big projects" commemorating the 100-year anniversary of Shigeru Mizuki's birth. Mizuki passed away in 2015 at 93 years old. Another project is a new Akuma Kun anime that premiered on Netflix on November 9.

The live-action sequel film Tonde Saitama ~Biwako Yori Ai o Komete~ (Fly Me to Saitama: From Lake Biwa With Love) dropped from #1 to #4 in its third weekend. The film sold 133,100 tickets and earned 189,226,490 yen (about US$1.29 million) from Friday to Sunday. The film has sold a total of 1.07 million tickets and earned a cumulative total 1,477,416,330 yen (about US$10.14 million)

The film opened on November 24 and ranked at #1. The film sold 292,300 tickets and earned 415,361,850 yen (about US$2.80 million) from Friday to Sunday in its opening weekend, and sold 444,500 tickets to earn 629,616,310 yen (about US$4.25 million) in its first four days, counting its Thursday opening day. (Thursday, November 23 was the Labor Thanksgiving Day holiday in Japan.)

The film was delayed from its original planned opening last year. The staff had put its production on hold following lead actor Gackt's announcement of an indefinite hiatus in September 2021. The hiatus was due to an early onset neurological disease that was progressing into a "life-threatening condition," resulting in dysphonia (disorder of the voice). Gackt announced in May 2022 that he was steadily recovering physically, and the film resumed production in October 2022.

The sequel film centers on the second phase of the "Japan Saitamization Plan" of the Saitama Liberation Front led by Rei Asami (Gackt) and Momomi Dannoura (Nikaidō). Seeking greater freedom and peace, the group heads to the Kansai region in the west, where an incident between the east and west will spark a fierce battle.

The first Tonde Saitama (Fly Me to Saitama) film opened in Japan in February 2019. The movie sold 191,000 tickets for 259,038,800 yen (about US$2.33 million) on in its opening weekend to top the Japanese box office.

Godzilla Minus One, Takashi Yamazaki's new film in TOHO's Godzilla franchise, dropped from #2 to #5 in its sixth weekend. The film earned 205,212,900 yen (about US$1.47=0 million) from Friday to Sunday. The film has sold a total of 2.7 million tickets for a cumulative total of 4,154,477,440 yen (about US$28.51 million).

Godzilla Minus One opened in Japan on November 3, 2023 ("Godzilla Day"), which was the anniversary of the first Godzilla film's November 3, 1954 release. The new film screened at The Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF) as the closing film of this year's event on November 1.

The film sold 648,600 tickets for 1,041,193,460 yen (about US$6.93 million) in its first three days in the Japanese box office. The film sold 14.7% more tickets and earned 22.8% more in its first three days than the last live-action Japanese Godzilla film, Hideaki Anno and Shinji Higuchi's Shin Godzilla, did in its first three days in 2016.

Ryunosuke Kamiki plays protagonist Kōichi Shikishima, and Minami Hamabe plays heroine Noriko Ōishi. (The two also lead the cast of NHK's ongoing weekday morning series Ranman.) Other cast members include Yuki Yamada, Munetaka Aoki, Hidetaka Yoshioka, Sakura Andō, and Kuranosuke Sasaki.

The film opened in U.S. theaters on December 1, and earned US$11,419,975 in its first three days to rank #3 in the U.S. box office in its opening weekend. The film has the highest opening weekend for a foreign film in the United States this year, surpassing the US$10.1 million opening weekend earnings of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Swordsmith Village Arc in March. The film has become the highest-earning live-action Japanese film in North America.

Yamazaki is the director and writer, and is also credited for visual effects. Yamazaki has primarily directed live-action films, including the Always: Sunset on Third Street, Returner, and Parasyte films, but has also directed CG films such as Stand By Me Doraemon.

Image via Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window anime film's website
Shinei Animation's anime film of Tetsuko Kuroyanagi's Totto-Chan: The Little Girl at the Window (Madoigwa no Totto-chan) autobiographical memoir ranked at #6 in its opening weekend in Japan. The film earned 131,730,130 yen (about US$904,100) in its first three days. The film opened in Japan last Friday.

Kuroyanagi's memoir tells her story of going to school at Tomoe Gakuen, after not fitting at her original elementary school. She meets unique students and learns new things at school, even as Japan descends into war. Kuroyanagi published the book in Japan in 1981, where it became a bestseller over the next year. It became required reading for Japanese elementary school students in the 1980s, and was also translated in English and many other languages worldwide.

Seven-year-old Liliana Ohno stars in the film as protagonist Totto-chan.

Shinnosuke Yakuwa (Eiga Doraemon: Shin Nobita no Daimakyō - Peko to 5-nin no Tankentai, Doraemon the Movie: Nobita and the Birth of Japan 2016, Doraemon the Movie: Nobita's Chronicle of the Moon Exploration) directed the film at Shinei Animation. and he also penned the script alongside Yōsuke Suzuki (Pazudora). Shizue Kaneko (Monster Strike The Movie, Adachi and Shimamura, How NOT to Summon a Demon Lord) designed the characters.

Rascal Does Not Dream of a Knapsack Kid, the second of two films in the sequel anime project for the Seishun Buta Yarō (Rascal Does Not Dream) light novel series, dropped from #4 to #8 in its second weekend. The film earned 66,100,040 yen (about US$453,900) from Friday to Sunday, and has earned a cumulative total of 271,050,294 yen (about US$1.86 million).

The film ranked at #4 in its opening weekend. The film sold 119,000 tickets and earned 164,594,554 yen (about US$1.11 million) in its first three days.

The film opened in Japan last Friday. The film is the conclusion of the story's High School arc. Sōichi Masui returned to direct the film at CloverWorks, and Masahiro Yokotani again supervised and wrote the script. Satomi Tamura also returned to design the characters and serve as chief animation director.

The sequel anime project adapts the eighth and ninth novels in the franchise: Rascal Does Not Dream of a Sister Venturing Out and Rascal Does Not Dream of a Knapsack Kid. Rascal Does Not Dream of a Sister Venturing Out opened in Japan on June 23. The film sold 118,108 tickets in its first three days and earned 175,648,924 yen (about US$1.28 million) to rank #4 in its opening weekend.

The novels' "University Student Arc" is inspiring an anime adaptation.

Eiga Sumikko Gurashi: Tsugihagi Kōjo no Fushigi na Ko (The Mysterious Child of the Makeshift Factory), the third anime film for San-X's Sumikko Gurashi franchise, dropped off the top 10 in its sixth weekend.

Kōkaku Kidōtai SAC_2045 Saigo no Ningen (Ghost in the Shell: SAC_2045 The Last Human), the compilation film for the Ghost in the Shell: SAC_2045 anime's second season, ranked at #1 on the mini-theater rankings in its third week. The film opened on November 23.

Sources: Kōgyō Tsūshin (link 2) (link 3), comScore via KOFIC

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