According to Yomiuri newspaper, a local movie distributor Furec decided to make one of their theaters specialize in anime movies. The theater, Fukuyama
Station Piccadilly, has been deprived of audience by a nearby cinema complex and has lost more than half of the visitors since 2005.
When they sought for the solutions for improvement, they remembered the enthusiasm for Neon Genesis Evangelion: The End of Evangelion
in 1997. Higashi no Eden - Movie I: The King of Eden
and Macross Frontier ~Itsuwari no Utahime~
have made 30 - 40 % increase in the number of the visitors. They will show Bungaku Shoujo
and Break Blade I
Nikkei newspaper reported that the recent movement of the anime movies originated from Kara no Kyoukai
. The total box office income was 306 million yen ($3.3 million) and 750,000 copies of the DVDs were shipped. The success of Kara no Kyoukai broadened the range of the audience of anime movies and brought about the great hits of the following movies: Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works
(box office: $2.8 million), Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha The MOVIE 1st
($3.8 million) and The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya
($7.8 million). A theater manager said "I saw young couples and middle aged people came to watch the Haruhi movie."
In response to the recent trend, Sunrise geared up the publicity of their new movies, King of Thorn
. Uchida Kenji, the president of Sunrise, aims to attract general cinema fans in their 10 - 30's. Kadokawa Pictures launched a new PR section for anime movies. Shiina Tamotsu, the president of Kadokawa Pictures, said "It will be a long-term project, but I sense its great potential."
Sources: Yomiuri news