Japanese animated fantasy “Spirited Away” will enter the record books this week by becoming the first foreign film in history to hit $200 million, excluding North America.
It’s already the highest-earning Japanese film ever, and is on course to become that market’s all-time B.O. champ, overtaking “Titanic,” which made $219.5 million.
Playing in its 13th week in Japan, the Hayao Miyazaki-helmed pic reached $199.3 million Tuesday, according to local distrib Toho, which means it will have crossed $200 million by today or Saturday.
“Princess Mononoke,” also directed by Miyazaki, was the previous homegrown Japanese B.O. champ, notching $163.5 million.
Only four foreign-lingo films have earned more than $100 million outside North America. In addition to the Japanese duo, the others are Italy’s “Life Is Beautiful,” which grossed $157.6 million, and the French-Germany co-production “Asterix & Obelix vs. Caesar.”
Gallic blockbuster “Amelie” is a sure bet to join that elite club, having amassed $63.5 million through last week from its home market plus lucrative runs in Germany, the U.K. and a few smaller territories.