UPDATED: BoxOfficeMojo reports that Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie (check out my movie review here) grossed an estimated amount of $91,014 (PhP 3,754,292) in 41 screens for the week of April 10-14. The movie which is exclusive to SM Cinemas debuted at #6. Competing against local and US titles, Road to Ninja didn’t do well at the box office as I hoped.
and was already pulled-out of the cinemas after its 2nd week. The movie is still being screened on SM North EDSA’s Digital Theater. I’m just saddened that the movie lacked promotion, there is no single TV ad or any tie-ups with media industries, there’s only Facebook to promote the movie. Rurouni Kenshin even had a red carpet premiere and major sponsors back then. I’m not quite sure though why they didn’t come to ABS-CBN or HERO for a possible tie-up (or if they actually approached the network). The fact that ABS-CBN is struggling with its anime line-up, they could have used this opportunity to establish and connect with new breeds of anime fans out there. Note that NARUTO Shippuuden Season 5 premiered two weeks ago on ABS-CBN’s anime block and this film could have been the perfect vehicle for that, it’s a win-win for both parties.
Rurouni Kenshin certainly open doors of opportunity to other Japanese films (anime) when it was shown in the Philippines back in December. But without proper promotion, this “Animation Domination” promotion from SM Cinema and Pioneer Films could be its last. If they don’t do well at the box office then there’s no point of bringing again this well-loved animes to our local theaters and anime fans will continue to patronize torrent sites offering free episode / movie downloads.
It is interesting to see how One Piece Film: Z and Hunter × Hunter: Phantom Rogue which are due on May 1 and May 15 respectively, fare at the box office with some tough competitions. But more than the numbers, I am thankful for both SM Cinema and Pioneer Films and actually appreciate their move of having this shown on an earlier date to avoid the Blu-ray / DVD release date (originally planned to premiere on May 15th, Blu-ray and DVD was released April 24th) otherwise, less-people will watch this and they will obviously just settled on subbed version from fan sites. But fret not because that number is for Philippine screening only. The movie is now being screened on other countries and will soon hit US for its official English dubbed version.
Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie is now the highest-grossing Naruto film, making 1.46 billion yen (about US$18.3 million) between its opening on July 28 and September 23 last year in Japan. The film was seen 1.25 million times. Mangaka (manga creator) Masashi Kishimoto was personally involved with the movie, creating the story and providing character designs. Blu-ray and DVD are out now, I’ve already got mine on time. Check my photos below.
UPDATE 2: Road to Ninja on its second week earned a total grossed amount of $123,613 (PhP 5,068,627) and dropped from #6 to #8 spot according to BoxOfficeMojo. One Piece Film: Z on the other hand, debuts tomorrow, May 1, exclusive to SM Cinemas. Check the schedule and ticket prices here.
Follow me on Twitter!