© 原泰久／集英社 © 2023映画「キングダム」製作委員会
Kingdom: Unmei no Honō (Flames of Destiny), the third live-action film based on Yasuhisa Hara’s Kingdom manga, maintained its position as the top film in the Japanese box office for the fourth weekend in a row. The film sold 213,100 tickets, earning 313,818,750 yen (approximately US$2.14 million) from Friday to Sunday. In total, the film has sold 2,899,000 tickets, earning a cumulative total of 4,168,937,700 yen (about US$28.53 million).
The film premiered in Japan on July 28, and within its first three days, it sold 703,530 tickets, earning 1,050,708,610 yen (about US$7.39 million). It has now surpassed the opening weekend records of the previous two Kingdom films, as well as becoming the highest-grossing live-action film of 2023 in terms of ticket sales. The film covers the Shi Ka (Zi Xia) arc and the Battle of Bayou from the manga, depicting the first joint battle of Shin (Xin) and Ō Ki (Wang Qi) against the invading Chō (Zhao) army. New cast members include Anne Watanabe as the pivotal character Shi Ka (Zi Xia), Kataoka Ainosuke VI as Fuu Ki (Feng Ji), Kōji Yamamoto as Chō Sō (Zhao Zhuang), Yuki Yamada as Man Goku (Wan Ji), Eri Murakawa as You Li (Yū Ri), and Hinako Sakurai as Dong Mei (Tō Bi). Returning cast members include Kento Yamazaki, Ryō Yoshizawa, Takao Osawa, Kanna Hashimoto, Nana Seino, Hiroshi Tamaki, and Kōichi Satō. Shinsuke Satō directs the film, with Yasuhisa Hara and Tsutomu Kuroiwa serving as the scriptwriters.
© 2023 Studio Ghibli
Hayao Miyazaki’s latest film, “The Boy and the Heron” (Kimi-tachi wa Dō Ikiru ka, or literally How Do You Live?), climbed from #3 to #2 at the Japanese box office in its sixth weekend. It sold 203,400 tickets and earned 306,631,700 yen (about US$2.09 million) from Friday to Sunday. In total, the film has sold 4,645,000 tickets, earning a cumulative total of 6,982,848,900 yen (about US$47.79 million). Within its first three days, the film sold 1.003 million tickets and earned approximately US$13.2 million in Japan. Over the Friday-Monday long weekend (including a national holiday), it sold 1.353 million tickets and earned 2.149 billion yen (about US$15.53 million). The film opened simultaneously on IMAX on July 14, and it has surpassed the opening weekend records of Hayao Miyazaki’s previous films, including his Academy Award-winning “Spirited Away” from 2001. The film also set a new three-day opening record on 44 IMAX screens, earning over US$1.7 million. It is the first Studio Ghibli film to have a simultaneous IMAX release. GKIDS has licensed the film for release in North American theaters later this year. Hayao Miyazaki is credited as the original creator, director, and scriptwriter, with Takeshi Honda as the animation director and Joe Hisaishi as the composer. Toshio Suzuki serves as the producer, and Kenshi Yonezu performs the theme song “Chikyūgi” (Globe).
“Shin Jigen! Crayon Shin-chan The Movie Chōnōryoku Dai Kessen: Tobetobe Temakizushi” (New Dimension! Crayon Shin-chan the Movie Super-Powered Climactic Battle: Soaring Hand-Rolled Sushi), the first 3DCG anime film of the Crayon Shin-chan franchise, dropped from #4 to #5 in its third weekend. It earned 190,737,560 yen (about US$1.30 million) from Friday to Sunday, with a cumulative total of 1,382,700 tickets sold and 1,676,928,330 yen (about US$11.47 million) earned. The film premiered on August 4 and ranked at #2 during its opening weekend, selling 322,000 tickets and earning 401 million yen (about US$2.8 million). The film tells the story of kindergartener Shinnosuke gaining telekinetic superpowers after a white light from space passes through Earth, while a man named Mitsuru Hiriya gains his own psychic powers from a black light and tries to destroy the Earth. Shinnosuke becomes Japan’s new hero in the face of fear. The film is the 31st installment in the Crayon Shin-chan franchise and took seven years to make. Hitoshi Ōne directed and wrote the screenplay, with animation by Shirogumi Inc.
© バード・スタジオ／集英社 (c)SAND LAND製作委員会
The anime film adaptation of Akira Toriyama’s SAND LAND manga debuted at #6 in the Japanese box office. The film premiered at this year’s Comic-Con International San Diego on July 22, where it received a special jury mention for the best animated feature film category at the 27th annual Fantasia International Film Festival in July. Toshihisa Yokoshima directed the film at Sunrise, Kamikaze Douga, and Anima, with Hiroshi Koujina serving as the direction adviser. Hayashi Mori wrote the screenplay, Yoshikazu Iwanami directed the sound, and Yūgo Kanno composed the music. The Sand Land manga, which Toriyama serialized in Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump magazine in 2000, received a compiled book volume later that year.
©2023 Paramount Pictures, Hasbro
Transformers: Beast Kakusei (Transformers: Rise of the Beasts), the first film in a planned trilogy for Paramount Pictures’ live-action Transformers franchise, dropped from #6 to #8 in its third weekend. It earned 97,418,340 yen (about US$667,200) from Friday to Sunday, and has earned a cumulative total of 1,077,958,120 yen (about US$7.38 million). The film premiered on August 4 and ranked #6 during its opening weekend in Japan. The North American release took place on June 9 after a delay from its original release date of June 24, 2022. In its opening weekend in the United States, it earned an estimated US$60.5 million. Steven Caple Jr. directed the film, with Anthony Ramos and Dominique Fishback as the lead actors. Various voice actors, including Michelle Yeoh, Pete Davidson, and Peter Cullen, play characters in the film. The screenplay was written by Joby Harold, Darnell Metayer, Josh Peters, Erich Hoeber, and Jon Hoeber.
Gekijо̄ban IDOLiSH7 LIVE 4bit BEYOND THE PERiOD, the theatrical anime concert for the IDOLiSH7 franchise, is still performing well at the box office, although it is out of the top 10 in its 14th weekend. It earned 69,046,560 yen (about US$472,800) from Friday to Sunday, with a cumulative total of 2,468,534,011 yen (about US$16.90 million).
Sources: Kōgyō Tsūshin (link 2), comScore via KOFIC