Image via the English SAO Twitter account
The first Sword Art Online Progressive anime film opened in Japanese cinemas on the weekend, debuting at number one on the weekend charts, just as did the previous film Ordinal Scale did back in 2017. The new adaptation of the original Aincrad arc, titled Sword Art Online The Movie -Progressive- Aria of a Starless Night, focused on Asuna jumping into the game and the completion of the entire first level.
According to Oricon, as of Sunday, October 31, Sword Art Online The Movie -Progressive- Aria of a Starless Night made 349 million yen (US$3.05 million) on the back of 225,000 tickets sold. This is less than Ordinal Scale in February 2017, which opened to 425 million yen (US$3.76 million) with 308,376 tickets sold. While most films in Japan open on Fridays, both SAO films opened on a Saturday, giving a decent one-to-one comparison.
Ordinal Scale eventually made over 4.3 billion yen (US$38.3 million) worldwide, with 2.52 billion yen (US$22,466,673) of that in Japan, with the rest being made in China, North America, South Korea, and 22 other nations. Aria of a Starless Night is set to open in over 40 nations around the world.
Sword Art Online The Movie -Progressive- Aria of a Starless Night opened in Japan on October 30, with a second film revealed after the end credits. Aria of a Starless Night will be released in North America on December 3, with Australia and New Zealand following on December 9, and other countries later.
Daryl Harding is a Japan Correspondent for Crunchyroll News. He also runs a YouTube channel about Japan stuff called TheDoctorDazza, tweets at @DoctorDazza, and posts photos of his travels on Instagram.