Japan gives moviegoers some pretty cool reasons to watch movies in the cinema.
With the advent of huge TV screens and great audio systems, moviegoers have been able to avoid high prices for cinemas by recreating a theater experience right in their own homes. Who can blame them? Why should we sit in a crowded room with sticky floors while people text and talk their way through an entire movie?
But Japanese movie studios are doing a pretty good job of enticing people to go to a movie theater by offering some really great promotional goods. This practice has really excelled with anime movies as viewers have received amazing tie-in materials often made by the creator of the series.
Take the recent Naruto movie Boruto – Naruto the Movie as an example. The first two million viewers across Japan received an official movie book titled Naruto – Hiden・Zai no Sho by Masashi Kishimoto and featured the story of the day Naruto became Hokage.
リサイクルショップ「スマイルサンタ」 (@smile__santa) December 15, 2015
The movie One Piece – Strong World, which came out in 2009, gave the first 1.5 million people a tie-in manga called One Piece – Zero written by series author Eiichiro Oda.
▼ Pictured here on the left with the promotional manga
from the One Piece movies Z and Gold as well.
ONE PIECE FILMのこれまでの入場者特典コミック！ 「STRONG WORLD」「Z」「GOLD」！ 並べてみると最高 この光景最高✨ https://t.co/AWuXnUyBMS—
Takumi (@kingdom29714194) July 31, 2016
In 2017 people who watched Fairy Tail – Dragon Cry walked away with a 200-page booklet by Hiro Mashima that featured the storyboards used to make the movie.
先日一足お先に劇場版FAIRY TAILのポスターとお写真パシャりしてきました！購入者特典は…みて！こんなに分厚い！！ネームて…豪華すぎますこれ…ちなみに中身も、いいのか？！ってくらい豪華すぎてお腹いっぱい…💖 https://t.co/QVI42AwJ5C—
茜屋日海夏(i☆Ris) (@iRis_a_himi) April 21, 2017
For the 2016 Detective Conan – The Darkest Nightmare film, series creator Gosho Aoyama wrote a thank you letter for the release of the 20th movie. Viewers also received a special serial code with an illustration as well as autographs and messages from the main cast on the back.
シリーズ20作「名探偵コナン 純黒の悪夢」の入場者に「青山剛昌からの純黒の感謝状!」がプレゼントされるようだ。歴代劇場版19作の中から好きな1本を特設サイトで無料で視聴できるシリアルコードも付いているらしい。 https://t.co/nKV1vpZX5A (映画ナタリー)—
cinepre//topics (@cinepre_topics) February 28, 2016
The animated Genocidal Organ movie handed out bookmarks with the main characters and key visuals in three different varieties. Viewers were also able to download phrases said by characters via a QR code.
【特典情報】 本日2/3(金)公開「虐殺器官」をご覧頂いたお客様へ、先着入場者プレゼントとして【朗読ボイス付クリアしおり】をお渡し致します！ここでしか手に入らないレアなものとなります♪ぜひゲットしてくださいね☆… twitter.com/i/web/status/8…—
ufotable_CINEMA (@ufotablecinema) February 03, 2017
And Nintendo showed off their mastery of these giveaways during the theatrical release of Pokémon the Movie – Hoopa and the Clash of Ages back in 2015.
Attendees who brought their 3DS could receive Hoopa in either Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire or Pokémon X/Y. The first three million people also got a Hoopa original Pokémon card and a Hoopa for the arcade game Pokémon Tretta.
MHXXで狩友がいない塩煎餅 (@09Goodsato) June 19, 2015
▼ Raise your hand if the only reason you went to see
Pokémon the Movie 2000 was to get the Ancient Mew promo card!
Pokemon the movie promo card https://t.co/f9ylZiBhnb—
nostalgia (@nostalgia_thing) April 29, 2017
With these types of goods offered at the movies, we could definitely see why people are willing to go out to watch their films. Seems like a win-win deal, especially if these giveaways will basically guarantee at least three million people see a movie.