Anime Film Draws Japan’s Biggest Box Office Opening of the Year

"Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo," the third release of a popular franchise, pulled in $13.9 million over the weekend.

TOKYO - Evangelion Shin Gekijoban Q, or Eva Q, as the latest installment is referred to locally, saw more than 770,000 admissions at only 224 screens on Saturday and Sunday. By comparison, the previous biggest weekend opener, Brave Hearts Umizaru, took 1.12 billion yen from 450 screens over three days when it bowed in July.

Brave Hearts Umizaru, a live-action production about a team of crack rescue divers, kept Dark Knight Rises off the top spot when both films opened on the same weekend.

Eva Q looks set to easily outperform previous installments at the box office, having racked up a quarter of Evangelion 2’s final total in its opening two days.

Takashi Miike’s latest horror offering Aku no Kyoten (Lesson of the Evil) hung on to the number two spot for the second week, and has now pulled in 876 million yen ($10.7 million).

Period action-drama Nobo no Shiro (The Floating Castle) was knocked off the top spot after two weeks, into third place. The film, which had its release delayed after last year’s tsunami because it features an attack using a wall of water, has a cumulative of 1.67 billion yen ($20.5 million) off nearly 1.4 million admissions.