Home-made films often appear in Japan's box office top ten - but it is extremely rare for them to dominate the chart, as they do for the week of September 6 to 12, with six local films in the top 10.
They account, in fact, for the number one and two films - Takeshi Kitano's Zatoichi and Katsuyuki Motohiro's Bayside Shakedown 2, respectively. BS 2 has not only became the movie of the summer, outdistancing all the Hollywood competition, but set a new box office record for live-action Japanese films, passing the Y11 billion ($92m) mark recorded by Antarctica in 1983.
Filling out the top ten are Dragonhead (pictured), Joji Iida's dystopian fantasy set in a devastated future Japan, Get Up!, a musical comedy by popular director-come-TV-film-critic Kazuyuki Izutsu, Masked Rider 555: Paradise Lost, the latest cinematic incarnation of an iconic character, and The Grudge 2, the follow-up to the horror sensation by newcomer Takashi Shimizu.
Six out of 10 is the usual proportion for Hollywood films to local product - but not a fluke in the best year for non-animated Japanese films in more than a decade.