It comes as no surprise that Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba THE MOVIE Mugen Train has lit the Japanese Box Office on fire like no other film before it. Not only did the film make an exorbitant amount of money on its first day in cinemas, but in doing so, broke one-day admission records on a Friday, usually one of the lowest days on opening weekend.
#NEWS Fall deeper into an endless dream with the brand new trailer from “Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie: Mugen Train” featuring theme song “Homura” by LiSA!
The film hits theaters across the USA and Canada in 2021! pic.twitter.com/FkWQNTi2gY
— Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba USA (@DemonSlayerUSA) August 2, 2020
It is estimated that from the Friday showings alone, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba THE MOVIE Mugen Train brought in over 1.2 billion yen at the Japanese box office on its first day of release. To compare to some other major films, the current opening weekend holder Frozen 2 made 1.88 billion yen (US$17.8 million) over three days, Weathering with You (which opened higher than Your Name, but trailed off in later weeks) opened to 1.5 billion yen (US$15.22 million), and Spirited Away, the highest-grossing anime film in Japan, opened to 1.05 billion (US$9.9 million) over Saturday and Sunday. Demon Slayer: Mugen Train is currently on track to gross more than 3 billion yen (US$28.4 million) in its opening weekend, safely taking the record.
But, it is estimated that Demon Slayer: Mugen Train has already taken the one-day admission record. It's the first film in Japan to breeze past both 800,000 and 900,000 admissions in one day, despite it being a Friday (ticket sales are usually higher on the weekends) and the current COVID-19 pandemic, which still sees some theaters have limited seating, though most of the major chains (besides Aeon Cinemas) have re-opened all seating in accordance with guidelines set out from the Japanese Government that came into effect on September 19. A majority of cinemas re-opened seating on October 16, the same day Demon Slayer: Mugen Train opened.
A Japanese Ad Agency, speaking to Sports Hochi, is predicting that Demon Slayer: Mugen Train will gross over the magical 10 billion yen (US$94.8 million) line, a line that only two non-Miyazaki anime films have reached, Your Name and Weathering with You. The same agency also predicts that the Aniplex-produced film will cleanly beat Weathering with You's opening weekend. With current admission estimates from Saturday, it seems Demon Slayer: Mugan Train has already well exceeded that record, as well as the records it broke on Friday.
The full details of this weekend's box office slayings won't be released until early next week, but estimates will keep rolling in. Though it's very safe to say that the Demon Slayer hype train is not stopping anytime soon.
Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba THE MOVIE Mugen Train continues to adapt the manga series by Koyoharu Gotouge, which saw a TV anime series in 2019. It is scheduled to be released in the west early 2021. The Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba TV anime series streamed on Crunchyroll as it aired.
Daryl Harding is a Japan Correspondent for Crunchyroll News. He also runs a YouTube channel about Japan stuff called TheDoctorDazza, tweets at @DoctorDazza, and posts photos of his travels on Instagram.