With Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within dying a quick death at the box office--going into its third week of release, the film is in 9th place and has only grossed $26.8 million--the film's overseas reception becomes all the more crucial for Square. Luckily, unlike North America's tepid response to it, FF:TSW looks to have a bright future when it is released in Japanese cinemas sometime this fall.
Japanese audiences already await the film with bated breath, according to an article in Core Magazine, with Square currently selling advance tickets at twenty-two theaters throughout Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Nagoya, Kyushu, and Hokkaido. As is often the case in Japan, preordering means much more than cementing one's place in the audience on opening night. Each advance ticket is also a collector's item featuring cast portraits and grouped by themes such as "Love" and "Friendship." Additionally, every customer who purchases an advanced ticket is automatically entered into a lottery with a chance to win Seiko's limited edition Final Fantasy watch. Based on the model worn by main character Aki in the film, the highly sought after item was previously reported as selling for $199.00 in the U.S.
With such excellent promotions and high anticipation, Square Pictures may yet reap the rewards of a successful film.