The forecast is sunny for Weathering with You, Makoto Shinkai’s dimension-warping climate parable. The anime feature, which opened domestically last week, has already broken a couple of box office records.
The film launched with preview screenings in 1,019 theaters, grossing $3.04 million on Wednesday and Thursday — a sum that attests to Shinkai’s large fanbase. It added an estimated $1.8 million over the three-day weekend (in 486 theaters), rising to $2.22 million with Martin Luther King Jr. Day included. Its estimated cume for the six days is therefore at $5.27 million. (Note: The numbers in this paragraph have been updated with GKIDS’s final totals.)
This total places Weathering with You ahead of Shinkai’s last offering, Your Name, which grossed $5.02 million in North America over its entire run. The film has also become an all-time top grosser for its distributor GKIDS, whose previous best was Studio Ponoc’s Mary and the Witch’s Flower ($2.41 million). Not bad for a week’s work.
On its Japanese release in 2016, Your Name was a phenomenon, grossing around $227 million in the country. It went on to take $358 million globally, surpassing even Studio Ghibli’s catalogue to become the most successful anime film of all time. Weathering with You, whose global cume is currently $183 million, is unlikely to match its predecessor — but it stands as last year’s biggest domestic release in Japan, where it has taken nearly $130 million.
The two films, which both center on teenagers caught up in vast, unpredictable cosmic changes, have earned Shinkai a massive following across the world. They have been well reviewed: Rotten Tomatoes gives Weathering with You a 93% critics’ score at the time of writing. Unusually for an animated film, it was also selected as Japan’s entry to the Oscars’ international feature category this year, but failed to earn a nomination.
For more information on screenings, head to GKIDS’s website.