Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters debuted at #3 in Japanese theaters this past weekend raking in a total of $1.3 million since it bowed on Friday. (Roughly $918,000 for Saturday and Sunday). The film sold 71,205 tickets.
That's a much smaller number than Shin Godzilla's #1 debut last year, premiering with $8.2 million for the three day weekend ($6.1 for Saturday and Sunday) and 412,302 in admissions. Part of the issue is that Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters is not being released as a major blockbuster like Shin Godzilla. Toho only released Planet of the Monsters to 158 theaters--Less than half of Shin Godzilla's 448. (450 is generally as wide as any domestic release has in Japan.)
Fans and analysts speculate that the Planet of the Monsters' theatrical release may have been a late decision. Toho demanded the project be updated from a television series to a feature after Shin Godzilla's success. This likely led to a decision to release the film in theaters in addition to Netflix. It appears the eventual Netflix release is the main priority with the theatrical release being something of a preview or quick cash grab.
The film was beaten by IT (#1) in it's 3rd week and Shochiku's big action franchise film, High & Low 3: The Final Mission (#2) in its 2nd week.
The bottom line is Planet of the Monsters is not a blockbuster, but nor was it intended to be based on theater numbers. Still, most seem to sum up the opening as fairly lackluster. To continue following the film's box office progress, make sure you check the forum topic every week.
Below is a chart of Godzilla opening numbers since 1991:
Below is a comparison of the entire Godzilla series' attendance numbers with other recent giant monster movies:
Reminder: The Japanese box office works differently than the American box office. "Low numbers" may, in reality, be fantastic. Additionally, the Japanese tend to put more emphasis on long term numbers and attendance, than opening weekends and yo-yoing ticket sales--This is due to discount weeks, holiday discounts, the type of film being released, etc. It's important to understand that ticket sales are never consistent and even a single film's ticket prices usually fluctuate from week-to-week. (Or even day-to-day.) As a result, Japan puts more emphasis on ticket admissions to measure success--So those are the numbers that typically have more meaning.
Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters stars the voice talents of Mamoru Miyano (Mobile Suit Gundam 00, Ultraman Zero: The Movie), Takahiro Sakurai (Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans), Kana Hanazawa (.hack//Quantum), Yuki Kaji (Attack on Titan), Tomokazu Sugita (Attack on Titan), Junichi Suwabe (Space Dandy), Kenta Miyake (Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn), Kenyu Horiuchi (Bleach, One Piece), Kazuhiro Yamaji (Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children) and Kazuya Nakai (Dragon Ball Super). The film is directed by Kobun Shizuno (Detective Conan: The Darkest Nightmare) & Hiroyuki Seshita (Knights of Sidonia) from a screenplay by Gen Urobuchi (Kamen Rider Gaim).
The movie is currently playing in Japanese theaters and will hit Netflix worldwide sometime in 2018.
The sequel, currently translated as Godzilla: Decisive Battle, Mobile Breeder City, hits Japanese theaters May, 2018.
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Godzilla vs. Kong (2020) is the sequel to Michael Dougherty's Godzilla 2: King of the Monsters and will be the fourth and final installment in the Monsterverse movie quadrilogy. It will also bridge both the Godzilla movies and Kong: Skull Island by bringing Godzilla and Kong face-to-face for an epic match-up. To learn more about Godzilla vs. Kong, check out the Godzilla vs. Kong about page here!
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