Filmmaking is not at all as easy and effortless as it seems. It requires a lot of blood, sweat, and tears. Only an eye for detail and superb acting on the part of the actors can make a movie go far. In the case of animated movies, a brilliant and creative design team with spectacular artists ensure a good film that breaks box-office records. In some instances, these movies grow to be such megahits that they are internationally acclaimed, received countless accolades and followers, and have several remakes in different languages. Without any further ado, here are the Top 10 Most Profitable Japanese Films.
1. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train
This animated film was a direct sequel to the first season of the anime of the same name. It broke umpteen records during its release and became the first non-Hollywood film to have topped the annual box office. It was also dubbed the highest-grossing Japanese film of all time with an earning of a whooping ¥40.32 Billion.
2. Spirited Away
This Studio Ghibli production, this film follows the story of a ten-year-old girl who begins working in a bathhouse in order to rescue her parents who have been transfigured into pigs. Regarded internationally as one of the best-animated films of all time, with a box office earning of ¥31.68 Billion, this film won the 75th Academy Awards for Best Animated Feature.
3. Your Name
This animated fantasy film by Makoto Shinkai tells the story of two soulmates that switch bodies frequently and learn to grapple with each other's routines. This movie is a critically acclaimed piece, with an array of phenomenal animation, emotional weight, and music scores. It earned ¥25.03 Billion in the Japanese Box Office.
4. Princess Mononoke
The story follows Ashitaka, a young Emishi prince, and his role in the conflict surrounding the humans abusing a forest for their greed and the gods of that forest. This film was reputed for pushing forth the name of Studio Ghibli in international forums and earned ¥20.18 Billion in the Japanese Box Office.
5. Howl's Moving Castle
Another Studio Ghibli creation, this film is inspired by a novel by British author Diana Wynne. It follows the story of young Sophie who is cursed by a witch and transformed into an old lady. She finds a wizard called Howl who is trying to form a resistance against war for the king. This film earned ¥19.68 Billion in the Japanese Box Office.
6. Bayside Shakedown 2
This comical adaptation is reputed for not sticking to the usual police stereotypes and depicting the force in a more lighthearted and human way. This movie is a live-action adaptation of a television series with the same name. It earned ¥17. 35 Billion in the Japanese Box Office.
This story is told through the point of view of goldfish Ponyo, who is rescued by a young boy and forms a bond with him. She slowly begins to wish that she was a human. Loosely based on the popular book The Little Mermaid, this animated film earned ¥15.5 Billion in the Japanese Box Office.
8. Weathering With You
Another film directed by animator Makoto Shinkai, this film follows the story of a boy who makes a decision to run away from his home and meets a girl who controls the weather, forming an unlikely friendship. This film won a Japanese Academy Award and earned ¥14.19 Billion in the Japanese Box Office.
9. The Wind Rises
This animated feature was based on the life of warplane engineer Jiro Horikoski. This Studio Ghibli film won several nominations and accolades including the Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year, a Japanese Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, and the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film, also earning ¥12.02 Billion in the Japanese Box Office.
This film recounts the failed expedition to the Antarctic and the drastic clashes between the region and their journey returning back home. It also gives an account of the 15 dogs that were abandoned there and left to fend for themselves. This moving cinematic piece earned ¥11 Billion in the Japanese Box Office.