'Departures' welcomed at Japan boxoffice

Domestic take nearly doubles after Oscar win

TOKYO -- Foreign-language Oscar winner "Departures" has seen its domestic boxoffice nearly double to more than 6 billion yen ($60 million) since its surprise victory in February, producer Shochiku said Monday.

Yojiro Takita's unconventional human drama about the life of an "encoffiner," a funeral professional who prepares dead bodies, had taken 3.2 billion yen ($32 million) before the Academy Awards -- failing to crack the 2008 boxoffice top 10 after its September release.

As of Sunday, about 5.3 million people had watched "Departures" during its 31-week theatrical run.

Takita's latest movie, "Sanpei the Fisherman" (Tsurikichi Sanpei), distributed by Toei, has yet to break the top 10 since its March 20 release.