TOKYO – The third installment in the “Yokai Watch” feature series, based on a popular role playing game, jostled with “Rogue One” for top spot at the Japanese box office. Both were down on their previous franchise installments.
Japanese publications traditionally rank films according to admissions, not box office earnings. On that measure “Eiga Yokai Watch Soratobu Kujira to Daburu Sekai no Daiboken da Nyan!?” (translation: Yo-kai Watch the Movie: The Great Adventure of the Flying Whale and the Double World, Meow!) came top with 545,000 admissions and $5.2 million from 415 screens, with Toho distributing.
This was down 42% on “Yokai Watch 2,” which made $47 million following its December 2015 release.
Disney’s “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” opened on Friday. Over the Dec. 17-18 weekend, it sold fewer tickets than “Yokai Watch 3,” some 414,ooo admissions, but grossed $5.6 million. That was barely half of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” which enjoyed a lifetime score of $99 million in Japan. The new film is now forecast to make $34 million. Including Friday, it has already grossed $7.38 million of that.
Opening in fourth was “Boku wa Ashita, Kino no Kimi to Date Suru” (translation: Tomorrow I Will Date With Yesterday’s You,) a romantic drama based on a best-selling novel. Distributed by Toho, the film recorded $1.7 million on 150,000 from 306 screens over the weekend.