This morning, GKIDS announced in a press release that Mamoru Hosoda’s Belle has earned over $3 million in its first two weeks in theaters. The anime film was released in U.S. and Canadian theaters on Jan. 14, preceded by IMAX previews on Jan 12.
The milestone makes Belle the director’s highest-grossing North American release by a wide margin. The record was previously held by Hosuda’s last film, Mirai, at just over $812,000. Belle is now the 19th film to gross over $3 million in the U.S, currently trailing Ghibli’s legendary Princess Mononoke. (The highest-grossing anime film of all time in the market, Pokémon: The First Movie, grossed over $85 million.)
Deadline previously reported the film earned $2 million in its opening weekend alone, and the film has since grossed over $61 million worldwide. Originally released in Japanese theaters in July of 2021 following a debut at the Cannes Film Festival, Belle became the third highest-grossing film at Japan’s box office last year.
Hosoda, known internationally for his critically acclaimed filmography, including Summer Wars and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, directed the film at Studio Chizu, an animation studio he co-founded in 2011 to make his films. The production team features Disney animator Jin Kim (Frozen), Tomm Moore and Ross Stewart’s Irish animation studio Cartoon Saloon (Wolfwalkers, Late Afternoon), and concept art by the London-based architect Eric Wong.
Belle is screening in Japanese audio with subtitles and an English dub featuring an original soundtrack. WGTC gave the film three stars for its spectacular, animated vision weighed down by tropey conventions and a flimsy narrative structure.