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Asia's favorite anime cat is still making hits. Diplomatic relations between China and Japan have been tense, to say the least, for a few decades now. But things really heated up between the two nations in the last few years, even leading to a Chinese ban on screening Japanese movies in 2012.

But even tough-as-nails Chinese politics couldn't resist the lure of a good 3-D Doraemon film. So this weekend, for the first time in three years, a Japanese film got the green light for nationwide screening. That movie was none other than Stand By Me Doraemon, which was released last August and has a running time of 95 minutes. Just how much did Chinese movie-goers want to see this beloved anime robotic, time-traveling cat? Bad enough to break box office records – like $33.47 million over opening weekend bad. Before that, the highest grossing opening weekend for a non-Hollywood import went to a Russian film that raked in $11.75 million.

This isn't the first time Doraemon has found himself involved in politics. In 2008, he was appointed as Japan's official anime ambassador (whatever that means). And in 2013, he was sent to bat for the country's 2020 Olympics bid. It's too bad he isn't coming stateside – then the GOP would finally have a viable candidate.

Photo: Twitter