(January 30, 2004 - Tokyo, Japan) – Warner Bros. Pictures Japan received the top three honors from Japan’s Motion Picture Exhibitors Association – the Grand Prix Award for Best Foreign Film Distributor of the Year and awards for “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” and “The Matrix Reloaded” as the country’s #1 and #2 highest grossing imported films of 2003, respectively. The announcement was made today by William Ireton, Managing Director, Warner Bros. Pictures Japan. “As our top international territory, Japan has a very high bar to meet in terms of box office performance, but Bill and his team have exceeded our expectations in managing last year’s slate of highly anticipated releases,” comments Veronika Kwan-Rubinek, President, Distribution, Warner Bros. Pictures International. “When planning our global marketing strategies for 2003’s tentpole films, we knew that our campaigns in Japan would play a key role in our success and our Japanese office has worked tirelessly on helping to create and execute them,” adds Sue Kroll, President, Marketing, Warner Bros. Pictures International. “We are honored that our efforts have been recognized by the Motion Picture Exhibitors Association and we have been further motivated to apply ourselves only to the highest standards when working on bringing the Studio’s 2004 slate to Japanese audiences,” adds Ireton. In 2003, Warner Bros. Pictures Japan grossed a total of ¥35 billion ($320 million) in box office, which broke the previous two records of ¥32 billion and ¥29 billion in 2002 and 2001, respectively. Warner Bros. Pictures Japan has been the top distributor in Japan for three consecutive years, with a nearly 30% share of the market for imported films.
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