'After Earth' Bows at Number One in Japan But Fails to Dazzle

After Earth Will Smith Jaden Smith - H 2013
Columbia Pictures

After Earth Will Smith Jaden Smith - H 2013

Sony's critically-panned post-apocalypse picture starring Will Smith looks set for an underwhelming final total in Japan.

TOKYO – After Earth topped the charts on its opening weekend in Japan, but failed to light up the box office with a gross of $2.57 million (250 million yen) in its first three days on more than 570 screens, as the Will and Jaden Smith-starrer continues its mediocre global run.

By way of comparison, Oblivion bowed in Japan with a $4.4 million opening weekend at the start of June.

With local analysts predicting a $10 million final total for After Earth in Japan, the third largest theatrical market after the U.S. and China, the film may still struggle to cover its production and marketing budget.

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100 Kai Naku Koto (Cry 100 Times), a memory loss love story directed by Ryuichi Hiroki, bowed at number two during the weekend, taking $1.59 million (155 million yen) from 223 screens, a solid start for distributor Showgate Inc, a subsidiary of advertising agency Hakuhodo.

The two debutantes knocked The Great Gatsby into third place after it had opened at the top spot last week.

G.I. Joe Retaliation, released locally as G.J. Back 2 Revenge, fell to fifth in the weekend rankings in its third week of release. One place below it was Oblivion, which has now earned more than $10 million locally in its first month.

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The Complex (Kuroyuri Danchi), the supernatural thriller from The Ring director Hideo Nakata, which has also passed the $10 million mark, fell to ninth in its sixth week of release.   

Propping up the chart after three weeks in theaters is Antoine Fuqua's Olympus Has Fallen, released in Japan as End of Whitehouse.