Best Picture nominee hits Chinese theaters eight months after its U.S. release
Universal’s Best Picture nominee “1917” finally got its release in China this weekend, earning an opening total of $5.16 million as the number of reopened theaters in the country grows to over 8,000.
The Golden Globe-winning film was distributed in China by Alibaba on behalf of Amblin Partners and received a strong 8.8/10 rating from audiences on ticketing platform Maoyan. Its opening weekend includes a $620,000 from 532 IMAX screens, and the film’s global box office total now stands at $381 million.
In second is Warner Bros. re-release of “Interstellar,” which took an additional $4.2 million in its second weekend to bring its total for this Chinese run to $11.5 million. Its $680,000 IMAX gross pushed the premium format’s weekend total to $1.6 million. Universal’s “Dolittle” is in third with a cume of $16.2 million, making it the highest-grossing film of 2020 in China after the COVID-19 pandemic closed theaters for more than six months. Next weekend will see China get a re-release of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” including 3D for the first time, as well as the release of Sony’s “Bad Boys for Life,” which has earned $419 million worldwide.
In Korea, the box office is continuing to show solid numbers despite the reduction of ticket availability to social distancing measures. The Hong Won-chan crime film “Deliver Us From Evil” earned a five-day opening of just under $15 million, while the “Train to Busan” sequel “Peninsula” now has a total of $27 million after four weekends. Unlike China, which has relied mostly on Hollywood imports to slowly raise numbers, Korea has seen a stronger turnout for films from its robust film industry.
Finally, France, which has struggled to get its box office moving again, got a boost from STX’s “Greenland,” which earned $1.09 million from 485 locations. Despite reopening more than a month ago, France’s movie theaters have found it difficult to bring audiences back to theaters. Showtimes have been reduced by 25% and some theaters, including Paris’ famous Le Grand Rex, have announced that they would close again due to low ticket sales failing to cover ongoing operational costs.