Chinese top 5 for 2/18-2/24/13:
Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons: $53.71 million/$157.54 million cume (15 screening days)
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey: $18.51 million/$18.51 million cume (3 screening days)
Say Yes: $8.32 million/$27.28 million cume (13 screening days)
Jack Reacher: $8.28 million/$13.34 million cume (9 screening days)
Lift to Hell: $1.57 million/$1.57 million cume (3 screening days)
China Film Biz reports that week 8 at the Chinese box office totaled $95 million, a 163% from the same frame in 2012. Journey To The West finished first with $54 million for an impressive total of $159 million.
Journey to the West looks like it could end up topping Avatar's $203.8 million haul in order to become China's #1 film of all time. Of course, that's a record that probably won't last too long.
Monday Update: WB reports that The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey earned $18.1 million from 4,009 screens in China over the weekend. The debut is the fourth Biggest 3-Day Opening Weekend for a US film, and the third biggest Warner Bros. opening weekend behind The Dark Knight Rises' 7-day Opening and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2's 4-day opening.
The Hobbit's global total is now $980.6 million. It could reach $1 billion by next weekend.
Sunday Update: The Hobbit is off to a great start in China. According to rough estimates, the fantasy flick grossed $17.8 million during its first weekend. Official numbers will be available tomorrow.
A strong performance in China will help The Hobbit's global total hit $1 billion. The current total is $979.9 million.
Paramount reports that Jack Reacher took in another $2.2 million in China over the weekend. The action flick is up to $12.6 million in the Middle Kingdom. Tom Cruise's latest won't end up anywhere close to the $102 million Chinese haul of Mission Impossible - Ghost Protocol.