Miyazaki’s “Arrietty” takes ninth at $6.4 million

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Karigurashi No Arietti (The Secret World of Arrietty")

Karigurashi No Arietti (The Secret World of Arrietty")

Hayao Miyazaki’s “The Secret World of Arrietty,” based on Mary Norton’s famous children’s novel The Borrowers, opened in ninth place in limited North American release, taking $6.6 million this past weekend.

It’s estimated that Arrietty will earn $8 million over the four-day President’s Day weekend, which ends Monday.

Playing on fewer screens than bigger-earning films this weekend, it made an average of $4,189 at 1,522 venues.

For over a decade, Disney has been distributing Miyazaki’s Studio Ghibli films in North America. Arrietty had a much better opening than any previous anime film distributed by Disney. Ponyo, Disney’s last wide-release anime film, opened at $3.6 million and eventually garnered $15.1 million in 2009.

The Secret World of Arrietty had the fifth-best anime opening in United States box office history, behind three Pokémon flicks and a Yu-Gi-Oh! movie.

The biggest hit in its native country in 2010, Arrietty grossed over $110 million in Japan alone. It’s received an “A-” CinemaScore grade from North American moviegoers.

About tiny people living under the floorboards of a country home, the film features a voice cast including Carol Burnett, Amy Poehler and Will Arnett.

Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds’ Safe House led narrowly with $24 million between Friday to Sunday, according to Sunday’s studio estimates. Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum’s The Vow was a close second with $23.6 million.

Studios will report final numbers for the long holiday weekend on Tuesday

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About Paul Anderson

Paul is an old-timer here at BCDB- his contributions go back to before the site! Paul is widely regarded as a Disney historian, and is also on staff at the Disney Museum in San Francisco. Paul is also a contributing historian for D23, the Disney Club. Paul has published several books and magazine articles on Disney history, too. You are welcome to drop Paul a line here.

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