Box Office: ‘The Martian’ Debuts at No. 1 in Japan

TOKYO — Fresh from its seven Academy Award nominations, “The Martian” bowed atop the Japanese box office for the Jan. 6-7 weekend.

Released on 814 screens by Fox Japan, the Ridley Scott-Matt Damon space adventure earned $4.3 million on 330,223 admissions in its opening frame. “The Martian” is expected to finish near the $30 million mark in the country, besting all recent space-themed films released in Japan save for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

The only other new entrant to the top 10, at number nine, was “Code Geass: Akito the Exiled,” a feature animation based on the “Code Geass” TV anime, comic, game and “light novel” SF/fantasy franchise. With Showgate distributing, the film scored $372,000 on 36,162 admissions. Fans were lured into the theaters by various goodies on offer, including shikishi (fancy cardboard squares) autographed by director Hidekazu Shimamura.

Last week’s No. 1, Toho’s period actioner “Nobunaga Concert,” slid to No. 2 with $3.4 million on 300,952 admissions, driving its cumulative total to $22 million.

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