China

China Box Office Weekend Actuals: 'Monk' Leads the Way While 'Jurassic World' Holds Strong in Final Weekend on July 06, 2015

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Jonathan Papish @ChinaBoxOffice

Lacking the local blockbuster that had been predicted to bring out moviegoers during the protection period, China's summer box office failed to erupt yet again this weekend. Weekly (June 29-July 5) box office receipts totaled just ¥674 million ($108.5 million), down 10% from the corresponding frame last summer, and marks the second consecutive weekly drop.

Leading the weekend, director Chen Kaige's 3D IMAX martial arts epic Monk Comes Down the Mountain 道士下山 took in a solid $37.26 million from ~150,000 screenings including Thursday evening previews. Reviews for the action/adventure flick were mixed on social media platforms (6.2 on Mtime, 5.6 on Douban, and 6.8 on Weibo) and its Saturday gross had a minimal bump (+39%) indicating Monk is skewing older and away from family audiences. Monk is already Chen's most successful work to date surpassing Sacrifice ($29.9 million) in just 3 days.

Jurassic World is winding down its China run, but held strong with $9.41 million (-40%) from ~47,000 screenings on its fourth and final weekend. That brings the total for Universal's global blockbuster to $221.7 million and places Jurassic as the fourth highest grossing film of all-time in China behind Avengers: Age of Ultron ($235M), Transformers 4 ($319M), and Furious 7 ($390M). Despite the great hold, Jurassic's 30-day imported film license will expire on Thursday, preventing it from passing Ultron. Universal must be disappointed that the run will be cut short with gas still left in the tank and one can only imagine how much longer Hollywood studios will put up with this treatment. 

In third place, underperforming Hollywood Adventures 横冲直撞好莱坞 grossed just $6.4 million, down 74% in its second weekend, from ~56,000 screenings. The Justin Lin produced action/adventure film has earned $46.65 million in 10 days of release. 

Newcomer I Am Somebody 我是路人甲 posted a decent $6.5 million from ~45,000 showtimes including Thursday night previews to take the fourth spot. Director Derek Yee's romantic comedy is set amid the backdrop of China's largest film studio and features an unknown cast which probably caused walkup moviegoers to choose other fare in celebrity obsessed China. However, Somebody will look to hold well throughout the month of July behind very strong word of mouth and celebrity endorsements.  

Rounding out the top 5 this weekend was holdover SPLII 傻婆狼2 with $4.4 million (-61%) from ~35,000 screenings. The HK/China coproduced action film has grossed $86 million after 18 days of release and passed April's Wolf Warriors 战狼 to cement Mainland actor Jacky Wu as a bankable male action star. 

The rest of this weekend's top ten can be found below with data from China's EntGroup.

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China Box Office Weekend Actuals: Disappointing 'Hollywood Adventures' Leads Sluggish Weekend; 'Jurassic World' Crosses $200 Million on June 29, 2015

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Jonathan Papish @ChinaBoxOffice

Producer Justin Lin (Fast & Furious 3-6) and three of China's biggest movie stars couldn't save a tepid domestic box office as Hollywood Adventures (横冲直撞好莱坞) opened to an underwhelming $27 million this weekend from ~150,000 screenings. Co-financed by Lin's Perfect Storm Entertainment, Bruno Wu's Seven Stars Media Group, and Beijing Enlight Pictures, Hollywood Adventures had been predicted to easily make back its estimated budget of $30 million, but very poor word of mouth slowed the film down right out of the gate. Users from China's top three film rating aggregators, Mtime, Weibo, and Douban, gave Hollywood scores of 5.5, 6.8, and 4.9 respectively with many complaining about the film's clichéd plot and awkward humor. 

The disappointing opening led an overall sluggish week at China's box office with Monday-Sunday receipts totaling just ¥750 million ($121 million), a 16% slide from the corresponding frame last year. SARFT (The State Administration of Radio, Film and TV) had hoped to start off its domestic protection month with a bang, but it will have to wait and see if next week's crop of local fare can kickstart the engine.

In second place this weekend, Universal's Jurassic World fell 60% from last weekend, earning $15.7 million from ~75,000 screenings. The global blockbuster has earned $202.3 million from China and became the third Hollywood movie in three months to top $200 million after Furious 7 in April and Avengers: Age of Ultron in May.

SPLII (杀破狼2) continued its strong run this weekend with $11.2 million from ~75,000 screenings, giving the HK/China coproduction an 11-day total of $73.9 million. Chinese media outlets have started calling the action flick this season's "dark horse" (黑马), a moniker last given to Wolf Warriors which also starred action star Jacky Wu and grossed $84 million.

Two Hollywood holdovers round out the top 5 this weekend with San Andreas jumping up a spot from last weekend to grab $2.8 million from ~14,000 screenings. The disaster film dropped just 29% and will cross the century mark on Monday or Tuesday, a milestone that seemed out of reach a few weeks ago. Conversely, The Divergent Series: Insurgent tumbled 80%, grossing $1.8 million from ~16,000 showtimes. However, its $15.8 million 10-day total has surpassed the first installment and indicates a growing audience for American YA films in China.

The rest of this weekend's top ten can be found below with data from China's EntGroup.

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China Box Office Weekend Actuals: 'Jurassic World' Rules Dragon Boat Holiday; 'SPLII' Strong in Second on June 23, 2015

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Jonathan Papish @ChinaBoxOffice

In China, as in other parts of the world, Jurassic World is proving itself to be the perfect weekend movie. Over the 4-day Dragon Boat Festival, the dinosaurs of Universal's blockbuster sequel roared to $49.1 million and a 13-day total of $175.4 million. Its 3-day weekend percentage drop was just 42% compared to opening weekend, while the film lost almost half of its screenings. Per screening attendance jumped from 51 to 61 this weekend making up the difference -- pretty impressive and indicating great word of mouth. Jurassic's nationwide average ticket price remained steady at an expensive $6.12 meaning moviegoers are favoring premium formats. 

Jurassic also passed ¥1 billion in local currency this weekend, becoming the tenth movie ever to reach that milestone and also the third in 3 months (Furious 7 in April and Avengers: Age of Ultron in May). This is the first year that three imported films have grossed more than ¥1 billion (2014 saw Transformers: Age Of Extinction and domestic hits Breakup Buddies and The Monkey King); China's SARFT (State Administration of Radio Television and Film) must be very anxious for the protection period to kick in.

Speaking of successful local pics, HK/China coproduction SPLII (杀破狼2) had a strong second place finish with $39.6 million. The action film starring Thailand's Tony Jaa and Jacky Wu has grossed $50.6 million since opening on Thursday and is actually outpacing Jurassic on weekdays since the latter's audience is predominantly composed of families and younger moviegoers. SPLII looks poised to top Wolf Warriors' $87 million as this year's highest grossing local action film and signals the emergence of Jacky Wu as the Mainland's premiere action star. 

In third place, The Divergent Series: Insurgent opened to an even $11.0 million. Although young adult franchises like Maze Runner and Hunger Games aren't hitting with Chinese moviegoers the same way they do with domestic ones, Insurgent's four day total nearly equals Divergent's entire run of $12.4 million last year indicating its fan base is growing.

Rounding out the top five was newcomer The Ark of Mr. Chow (少年班) performing under expectations with $5.5 million, and Hollywood holdover San Andreas, holding well on just 3% of China's screens with $5.3 million for a 20-day total of $94.1 million. 

Stand By Me Doraemon ($84.9 million) passed Big Hero 6 ($84.6 million) this weekend to become the #2 highest grossing animated film in China's history. Kung Fu Panda 2 ($94.75 million) will keep its crown for the time being. 

The rest of the 4-day holiday weekend top ten can be found below with data from China's EntGroup.

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China Box Office Weekend Actuals: 'Jurassic World' Roars to $97M in Five Days on June 15, 2015

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Jonathan Papish @ChinaBoxOffice

A large chunk of Jurassic World's record-breaking global debut of $524.4 million came from China where moviegoers contributed $66.6 million over the weekend and $97 million since the film premiered on Wednesday. Devouring 78% of the total box office this weekend, Universal's dino reboot played on nearly half of China's ~25,000 screens with 208,700 showtimes. Saturday ($27.18 million) and Sunday ($23.27 million) were the 11th and 14th highest single-day grosses in China's box office history respectively. 

In second place, holdover San Andreas felt some light aftershocks, falling 63% to $12.68 million and a 13-day total of $80.13. Demand for the Dwayne Johnson disaster flick remained high after a higher than expected opening weekend and strong word of mouth, but it ended up losing almost half of its screen time once JW opened (Monday - 48,321 showings; Tuesday - 26,642 showings). San Andreas will have difficulty hitting $100 million with the added pressure from several domestic pics opening this week. 

Japanese animation Stand By Doraemon took home third place with $4.38 million, lifting its 18-day cume to $81.43 million. "Blue Fatty" as he's lovingly known to his Chinese fans is closing in on Big Hero 6's $84.6 million for the #2 highest-grossing animated film in China's history.

Aamir Khan thanked Chinese fans this week for embracing his film PK. The highest-grossing Indian film of all-time has made $94 million worldwide with nearly a fifth ($18.4 million) coming from the Mainland. Khan said the film's success "reflects the historical love of Chinese audiences for Indian cinema as well as the emotional and cultural bonds they share with this country [India]."

Rounding out the top five was local newcomer Who Am I (我是谁2015) which grossed $539K for the weekend. It's the first Chinese film to enter the top five in three weeks.

The rest of this weekend's top ten can be found below with data from China's EntGroup.

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May 2015 Monthly China Box Office Report: Imported Films Dominate, YTD Box Office Up 57% Over 2014 on June 10, 2015

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Jonathan Papish @ChinaBoxOffice

May 2015 Box Office Stats

China's box office receipts for May 2015 hit ¥3.178 billion ($512.08 million), an increase of 42.86% over May 2014 thanks in large part to the dominance of Avengers: Age of Ultron which contributed ¥1.409 billion ($227 million). There were also 4.26 million screenings (+33.33%) and 86.19 million admissions (+36.19%) during May. Domestic films accounted for ¥805 million ($129.69 million) while imported films earned ¥2.372 billion ($382.16 million) for a 3:1 split in favor of foreign films. 

2015 YTD Box Office Stats

The 2015 yearly box office total through May 31 stands at ¥16.867 billion ($2.72 billion), 56.7% ahead of 2014 at the same date. There have been 20.72 million screenings (+34.54%) and 465.01 million admissions (+52.47%). Domestic films have earned ¥8.512 billion ($1.38 billion) and imported films have grossed ¥8.305 billion ($1.34 billion), an almost even split five months through 2015. 

A Look Ahead

The first half of June has once again been dominated by imported films (San Andreas, Jurassic World, Stand By Me Doraemon), but late June will see the arrival of several domestic pics with huge box office potential (SPL2: A Time For Consequences, The Ark of Mr. Chow, and Hollywood Adventures) and July is the industry's unofficial protection month with no scheduled foreign releases. 

May's top ten films are shown below with data from China's EntGroup.

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