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Thread: Detective Chinatown 3

  1. #1
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    Detective Chinatown 3



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    Detective Chinatown 3
    Wang Baoqiang
    Gene Ching
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  2. #2
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    IMAX 2020 CNY re-releases



    Five Chinese New Years to Release in IMAX

    Hong Kong filmmaker Peter Chan’s Leap, a film about the China’s national women’s volleyball team, has been set to hit over 660 IMAX theatres in China on January 25, 2020, the first day of the Chinese New Year, according to an official announcement released today. Along with the previously announced films including Detective Chinatown 3, Lost in Russia, The Rescue, Vanguard, there will be five Chinese films to be shown on IMAX screens during the lunar new year holiday. Among them, Detective China town 3 was entirely shot by ALEXA IMAX cameras. This makes Detective Chinatown 3 the fourth commercial film worldwide and the second in Asia that is shot by ALEXA IMAX. IMAX China also unveiled a special poster today, which features comics avatars of characters in the movies.
    I feel so behind. I've not seen any of these films.

    THREADS
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  3. #3
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    Detective Chinatown 3 - Trailer



    Warner Bros. Pictures
    8.15M subscribers
    In the latest “Detective Chinatown” film from writer/director Chen Sicheng’s hit series, Chinatown detectives Tang Ren (Wang Baoqiang) and Qin Feng (Liu Haoran) head to Tokyo to join Japanese investigator Noda Hiroshi (Satoshi Tsumabuki) on a high-profile case involving the murder of a powerful businessman… and the prime suspect is the president of the lethal Black Dragon Gang. But they’re not the only ones taking on the challenge, as detectives from “CRIMASTER World Detective Rankings” also converge in Tokyo to help catch the killer. The main cast also includes Tony Jaa, Masami Nagasawa, Shota Sometami and Tadanobu Asano. In select theaters January 24!
    A U.S. limited-theatrical release for CNY. I may just have to check this out...

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    Detective Chinatown 3
    2020 Year of the Rat
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    Aw crap...shoulda seen this coming.

    China delays blockbusters as cinemas empty out under state orders to control Wuhan virus outbreak
    The release of seven highly anticipated blockbuster movies has been put off indefinitely as China takes steps to contain the deadly pneumonia epidemic
    Media stocks face the brunt of sell-off on the last day of trading before the long holiday, with a key gauge slumping 3.8 per cent
    Zhang Shidong in Shanghai
    Published: 7:10pm, 23 Jan, 2020


    A bicyclist wears a face mask in front of a display for the upcoming Lunar New Year, in Beijing. Chinese health authorities urged people in the city of Wuhan to avoid crowds and public gatherings, as the new viral illness could spread further. Photo: AP Photo

    China’s studios have indefinitely delayed the release of seven highly anticipated blockbusters just before the start of the Lunar New Year holiday, yielding to government orders to avoid public gatherings to contain the spread of a deadly viral outbreak.
    The postponement of the films, including Boonie Bears: The Wild Life, Legend of Deification and Detective Chinatown III, comes at an inopportune moment as the country’s box office is struggling to recover from a second consecutive year of slowing growth.
    Tickets will be refunded because of the quickly spreading epidemic that broke out in the central city of Wuhan in December, producers said in separate statements on Thursday.
    The government orders came just a day before the start of China’s long Lunar New Year holiday, casting a shadow over the movie industry that was pinning its hopes on a recovery in box-office revenues during the nation’s most important festival.


    The release of Detective Chinatown III has been delayed to contain the rapidly spreading virus outbreak. Photo: Weibo

    Cinemas, along with restaurants, airlines, etc are taking a beating amid concern that quarantine measures would empty out public places precisely at the most important holiday for the nation of 1.4 billion people.
    The industry is already grappling with shrinking investment amid increased government scrutiny over the past year.
    A gauge of China’s media stocks slumped 3.8 per cent on Thursday, underperforming a 2.8 per cent decline in the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index on the last trading day before the holiday, on concerns the sector will endure a prolonged slowdown.
    Wanda Film, owned by billionaire Wang Jianlin, plunged 7 per cent to 17.29 yuan in Shenzhen. Beijing Enlight Media slid 5 per cent to 10.57 yuan after saying it will pick up another time slot for the release of its animated movie Legend of Deification. China Film, which distributes movies and runs a theatre chain, sank 4.8 per cent to 13.81 yuan in Shanghai.
    China’s box-office growth slowed to 5.4 per cent in 2019. It was the second consecutive year that industry growth slowed down, as investment shrank amid the increased regulatory scrutiny of content approval and crackdown on tax evasion. Some 1,900 companies producing movies and TV dramas shut down last year, according to the Securities Daily.
    China is taking all steps possible to contain the spread of the coronavirus, imposing a lockdown in Wuhan. All public transport in and out of Wuhan, including trains, buses and ferries, stopped at 10am on Thursday as the central government imposed a quarantine to try to contain the spread of a coronavirus that has killed 17 people and infected hundreds more.
    China reported 571 cases of pneumonia caused by the virus and 17 deaths, in 25 provinces as of Wednesday, according to the National Health Commission. The outbreak coincided with the nation’s busiest transport season, when an estimated 3 billion tourist trips will be made over the holiday.
    Airlines, tourism and consumer companies were among the worst-hit stocks on concern the spread of the epidemic will discourage travelling and deter spending. Severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars), which infected more than 8,000 people and killed almost 800 in 2003, slashed China’s monthly retail sales growth by half and chipped two percentage points off quarterly economic expansion that year.

    Additional reporting by Yujing Liu
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  5. #5
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    The U.S. repercussions of cornovirus Chinese cinema quarentine

    U.S. Release of Chinese New Year Films Canceled as Coronavirus Crisis Escalates
    5:43 AM PST 1/23/2020 by Patrick Brzeski


    'Detective Chinatown 3'

    Warner Bros. was set to release Wanda's 'Detective Chinatown 3' on Saturday, giving the action comedy the biggest North American outing to date for a Mandarin-language movie.
    China's major movie studios are scrapping the North American release plans for their big Lunar New Year blockbusters after being forced to shelve the projects at home because of the growing coronavirus outbreak.

    On Thursday afternoon, the leading studios in Beijing announced simultaneously that all seven of the major films that were set for release on Saturday, the first day of the weeklong Lunar holiday, would be put on hold.

    Chinese New Year is the biggest box office period in the world by far, and the coming week was expected to generate as much as $1 billion in ticket sales revenue (think the Christmas/New Year's corridor on steroids). But with confirmed cases of the coronavirus climbing to nearly 600, medical authorities in China warned the public against congregating in crowded places, and distributors interpreted that as applying to cinemas. There were fears that even if the releases went ahead, theaters would be deserted.

    Warner Bros had picked up the North American rights to what was looking to be the holiday season frontrunner, Wanda's action comedy sequel Detective Chinatown 3. Warners had set the film for a continent-wide, North American release on Friday. The studio described the release plans — spanning 150 cinemas with limited IMAX engagements — as the biggest outing for a Chinese-language film in recent memory.

    Sources at Wanda tell The Hollywood Reporter that the Warners release will be put on hold in tandem with the China release delay.

    Dante Lam's patriotic action adventure film The Rescue, produced for upwards of $90 million, was similarly set for a significant North American opening courtesy of China's own CMC Pictures. A source close to CMC says those plans also have been scrapped.

    Hong Kong-based Huanxi Media would have been the studio to watch this Chinese New Year season. The fast-growing studio had two of the season's most-buzzed-about projects, Xu Zheng's comedy smash Lost in Russia (a sequel to his beloved 2015 blockbuster Lost in Hong) and Leap, Peter Chan's decade-spanning sports drama, starring Gong Li and Huang Bo, about China's national volleyball team. Both projects had been generating strong word of mouth throughout the industry in Beijing, and a source at Huanxi said the studio was in advanced discussions to sell the U.S. rights to both projects. "These discussions will definitely be impacted now," the source said.

    The Chinese studios had several good reasons for making sure their most important movies of the calendar didn't open offshore before at home in China.

    The Chinese theatrical market is profoundly trend driven, with online buzz driving or dampening the box office momentum of a film within hours of its release. Chinese films also still make the vast majority of their money in their domestic market. Last year's Chinese New Year champion The Wandering Earth (2018), for example, earned $5.8 million in North America compared to $690 million in China. Studios, naturally, would be very reluctant to risk having the buzz surrounding a comparatively low-value U.S. outing travel back to China to affect the movie's real earning potential. A pirate copy of a tentpole hitting the internet before it opens in China could be even more devastating.

    Chinese distributors also are required to get special permission to open a film overseas before its local release, so it's not clear whether going ahead with the U.S. openings would have even been legal.

    As news surrounding the coronavirus has worsened, shares in many of China's leading film companies have plummeted on the local stock markets this week. Distributors and theaters are working with ticketing platforms to offer refunds on the more than $50 million in tickets that had pre-sold just for Saturday. The Beijing film industry appears to be in a collective holding pattern, waiting anxiously with the entire country to see how the next phase in the coronavirus crisis will unfold.
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  6. #6
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    Chollywood falls ill

    JANUARY 23, 2020 11:13AM PT
    How the Wuhan Coronavirus Infected the Chinese Film Industry
    By REBECCA DAVIS and PATRICK FRATER


    CREDIT: YONHAP/EPA-EFE/SHUTTERSTOCK

    Just days ago, no one would have predicted that China’s most lucrative film-going season was about to be derailed by the escalating epidemic of a novel coronavirus that is now rapidly spreading through the country and beyond.

    Variety takes a look at how the box office in the world’s second largest film market has been overturned by a public health crisis that has made gathering in enclosed cinema spaces a health risk.

    Pre-Sales and Promotion

    Earlier this week, it seemed to be business as usual for the Spring Festival holiday release window. Production teams collectively spent a reported $144 million (RMB1 billion) on publicity for the seven blockbusters scheduled to release this Friday and Saturday, the eve and New Year’s Day of the new lunar year of the rat. The holiday is a time for family gatherings, when millions who’ve saved up all year take one of their few vacations, and head back to their hometowns. It is the largest annual human migration in the world.

    It seemed that the biggest setback would be a marketing blow to Peter Chan’s volleyball drama “Leap,” which suddenly changed its Chinese title from “Chinese Women’s Volleyball” to “Win the Championship” the day before pre-sales began.

    The new name, unknown to viewers bombarded with posters and materials for the other, is the same as the short made by rival director Xu Zheng that was included in the widely viewed propaganda film “My People, My Country,” and has caused confusion. Chan’s title change decision appears to have been a way to avoid fallout from dissatisfaction within the sports community of how the women’s team is portrayed, rather than government censorship.

    Pre-sales for the seven films had already reached a reported $67.5 million (RMB468 million) by Thursday morning. “Detective Chinatown 3” had pulled ahead as the front-runner, setting a new pre-sale record by selling more than $14 million (RMB100 million) worth of tickets in just 23 hours.

    Monday: Concern Mounts

    By Jan. 20, concerns ramp up about the spread of the coronavirus due to mass travel ahead of Chinese New Year, as the death toll and infection tally mounts. Chinese authorities report three deaths and more than 200 cases in the country and confirm that the disease can in fact spread through human-to-human transmission. Since the first case outside of China was discovered on Jan. 13, the virus has spread to Thailand, Japan and South Korea. On Jan. 21, the first reported case is found in the U.S., in Seattle.

    Ticket sales in Wuhan were mounting swimmingly before Sunday (Jan. 19), accounting for around 2% of the national box office, on average. But from Sunday onwards, ticket sales rapidly declined, dropping from 2.2% of the national total to 0.5% in the space of three days. From Monday, film company shares begin to fall, including those for Wanda Film and China Film.

    On Wednesday (Jan. 22), China’s major ticketing platforms Maoyan and Tao Piaopiao put out official statements announcing unconditional refunds for any tickets bought in Wuhan.

    The same day, Chinese authorities announce a quarantine for the entire city of Wuhan and its 11 million residents, effective from the next day. Travel restrictions are planned to shut down public transit out of the city. Chaos ensues as residents fight to get out of the metropolis before lock down sets in Thursday morning at 10AM local time, with Chinese reports estimating that some 300,000 fled.

    Thursday: Box Office Meltdown

    By Thursday (Jan. 23) morning, the hashtag “Why don’t the spring festival films change their release dates?” is a top trending item on Weibo, China’s Twitter-equivalent. Production teams are faced with a lose-lose decision: risk angering the public by keeping their film in the line-up, or pull out and lose millions in P&A.

    Official film Weibo accounts start to slash promotional material and instead boost posts cheering for “frontline medical workers.” Then, in quick succession, all seven issue statements that they are formally withdrawing their titles. No future release dates have been announced.

    Animations “Boonie Bears: The Wild Life” and “Jiang Ziya” pulled out first. “Now that the epidemic is happening, we must stand impregnably united, and focus on the disease prevention and saving lives,” the “Jiang Ziya” promo site said. “We salute those working on the front lines of the epidemic and apologize to theater workers nationwide.”

    The other titles swiftly follow. “Movies are just a part of life; life and safety are more important, since ‘movies are short and life is long,'” said the team behind “Leap.” It said it was pulling out after “careful consideration of the risk of disease transmission in a confined space.”

    Lam’s “The Rescue” was on-brand and adopting the most rousing tone, writing: “At the moment, many medical and rescue personnel are sticking to their posts, stepping forward bravely at the key moment of danger and disaster! The movie ‘The Rescue’ is about exactly this kind of spirit. Let us as millions, all of one mind, with unshakeably unity, win the battle of preventing an epidemic!”

    “Lost in Russia” director Xu Zheng wrote a post expressing his gratitude to Hengdian Film, his producer Huanxi Media, and the marketing team, whose early work has been washed away. “All this is less important than eliminating the hidden dangers of the disease!”

    Ticketing platforms Maoyan and Tao Piaopiao now promise to refund all tickets without question, a process that may take up to a week. Cinema chains say they have been overwhelmed with calls from patrons asking for refunds.

    Cinemas in Wuhan and other nearby locked-down cities have been entirely shut down, and authorities have issued a mandatory face mask policy there for public spaces. Cinemas elsewhere remain operational for the moment, advertising that they have boosted disinfection measures and ventilation for theaters.

    Large-scale cultural activities like temple fairs have been cancelled, and cultural institutions such as museums have slashed activities to reduce visitor tallies. The Forbidden City in Beijing will be shuttered from Saturday.

    Over the course of the day, China has locked down some 20 million people in Wuhan and neighboring cities by indefinitely banning planes and trains. The death toll has risen to at least 17, with some 517 affected. The virus has now been detected in Japan, Hong Kong, Macau, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam and the U.S. and U.K. The WHO is currently mulling whether to declare the epidemic a global health emergency.

    On Thursday – the last chance for business before a recess of five full trading days for the spring festival holiday – shares of a number of major film companies plummeted. Wanda Film closed almost 7% lower after falling 20% over the previous five trading days, and China Film closed nearly 5% lower, down 17% over the past five trading days.
    THREADS
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    record breaking

    Feb 12, 2021 9:59am PT
    ‘Detective Chinatown 3’ Tops Chinese New Year Day With $163 Million, Breaking Record for Best Debut in a Single Market

    By Rebecca Davis


    Courtesy of WanDa Pictures
    The world’s largest film market is living up to its title with world-record-setting sales. “Detective Chinatown 3” shot past strong competition, as predicted, on its Chinese New Year opening day on Friday, notching a record-breaking $163 million (RMB1.05 billion) in sales despite poor word of mouth.

    The sum marks the highest ever opening day tally for a film in a single market, beating out former title-holder “Avengers: Endgame,” which grossed $157 million in North America on its first day in 2019.

    “Detective Chinatown” sales on Friday accounted for more than 60% of China’s total new year’s day box office nationwide, which surpassed that of 2019 at $268 million (RMB1.73 billion).


    The massive commercial success of director Chen Sicheng’s comedic mystery also propelled Imax to new heights. As of Friday evening local time, the firm “very confidently” projected full-day China earnings of $7.7 million from three films, 18% more than on Chinese New Year’s Day in 2019. Almost all of that revenue — some $7.4 million, or 96% — came from “Detective Chinatown 3,” which was shot on Imax cameras.

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    That marks the highest opening day for a Chinese film in Imax of all time. It also marks the third-highest ever opening day for any Imax film, foreign or local, in China, behind “Avengers: Endgame” ($14 million) and “Avengers: Infinity War” ($8.1 million).

    According to data from the Maoyan industry tracker, 38% of all scheduled Friday screenings in China were for “Detective Chinatown.” They saw 69.4% attendance rates, meaning that most screenings were almost sold out each time, given the government’s current 75% cap on max cinema capacity to curb the spread of COVID-19 over the holidays.

    Maoyan is currently estimating a whopping $976 million (RMB6.3 billion) total run for “Detective Chinatown 3” within the China market alone. That would be almost double the world’s top grossing picture of 2020, “The Eight Hundred,” which earned $461 million, and make the film the country’s highest earner in history. Current local estimates expect the film to reach $400 million over the three-day period of its first weekend.

    Audiences have been yearning to see the Tokyo-set third installment of the “Detective Chinatown” franchise since last Chinese New Year, when it was a frontrunner but was extensively delayed due to COVID-19-induced cinema closures at the time.

    Nevertheless, the film’s high volume of ticket sales comes despite poor word of mouth online. It has a mere 6.8 out of 10 rating on the taste-making Douban platform, where a third of users have given it just three out of five stars and 6% have given it the lowest possible one-star rating.

    Many were put off by excessive product placement amidst the action. “I have never seen such shameless acts of inserting advertisements into a film before,” wrote one top comment on the site liked thousands of times. Another two-star review summed up the caper: “In a runtime of 136 minutes, it’s 110 minutes of running + 15 minutes of father-daughter interaction + 10 minutes of deduction + 1 minute of commercials.”


    Numerous others felt fatigued by the franchise’s over-the-top comedic style. “You can tell from the first five minutes that this film is a dud. Everyone in it is screaming,” wrote one, while another chimed: “[Lead actor] Wang Baoqiang’s style of pretending to be crazy and stupid has reached the point of just being disgusting.”

    Others complained that some of the gags were disrespectful to healthcare workers and women.

    It’s worth noting that Chinese box office darlings of years past — including “Wolf Warrior 2,” the 2019 Chinese New Year breakout sci-fi epic “The Wandering Earth,” and “Nezha,” the country’s top three grossers — were all unexpected hits that saw slower box office growth propelled by strong word of mouth over time, rather than a sudden first day explosion in sales.

    The Lunar New Year holiday, which this year runs from Feb. 11 to 17, is typically the most lucrative period of the year for China — a mere week in which most cinemas make more than a tenth of their annual revenue. This year, seven major tentpoles debuted on Feb. 12, with two more smaller films set to open on Valentine’s Day.

    The light-hearted time-travel-themed rom-com “Hi, Mom” from writer-director-actor Jia Ling came in second with $35.5 million (RMB229 million), while “A Writer’s Odyssey,” an action-adventure film from Lu Yang (“Brotherhood of Blades”), ranked third with $21.4 million (RMB138 million).

    In fourth was the perennial new year children’s favorite, animated “Boonie Bears” franchise film “The Wild Life,” which earned $17.7 (RMB114 million). Director Li Weiran’s live-action fantasy “The YinYang Master” came in fifth with $12.8 million (RMB82.4 million).

    “New Gods: Nezha Reborn,” another cartoon depiction of the popular folk god Nezha, ranked sixth with a $8.97 million (RMB57.9 million) debut, while crime thriller “Endgame” was the last amongst the new releases, opening to just $6.94 million (RMB44.8 million).

    Box office ranking ultimately matched up exactly with each film’s success in pre-sales, according to Maoyan. In that category, “Detective Chinatown 3” had far and away led the pack, with pre-sale ticket sales of $148 million (RMB955 million) as of early Friday evening — $104 million (RMB674 million) of which were for opening day. Its closest competitor, “Hi, Mom,” sold $34 million (RMB219 million), while third place “A Writer’s Odyssey” sold $13.4 million (RMB86.4 million).

    “The outstanding performance of the film market is due to a sufficient supply of films during Spring Festival… of diversified content and genres,” wrote an analysis piece published by the People’s Daily newspaper, the Communist Party’s mouthpiece.

    Another major factor, it said, was that due to COVID-19, citizens have been strongly urged to celebrate the new year in place without travelling home, meaning that many — particularly urban migrant workers who would typically return to rural hometowns — are experiencing an unconventional holiday in which movie-going may appear to be a more attractive option.
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  8. #8
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    $1.2b


    Chinese New Year Box Office Hits $1.2B, Sets Record High Over Holiday Period


    By Nancy Tartaglione
    International Box Office Editor/Senior Contributor
    @DeadlineNancy

    February 17, 2021 12:40pm


    Wanda Pictures
    The Chinese New Year box office achieved yet another milestone Wednesday, with grosses for the holiday period growing to an estimated RMB 7.78 billion ($1.2 billion). This beats the previous all-time high set during the comparable 2019 holiday (RMB 5.9B). China often outdoes itself, but the fact that 2021’s Lunar New Year frame came with Covid capacity restrictions makes the performance even more staggering.

    Factors working in the session’s favor included a diverse slate of seven new local titles (including two powerhouses at the top), as well as increased ticket prices in some areas, additional screens versus 2019 and a reduction in travel which made moviegoing the first-choice activity for people who were not journeying to see family as would normally be the case during the holiday.

    After setting new records for opening day and opening weekend in a single market (February 12-14), Wanda Pictures’ Detective Chinatown 3 has grossed RMB 3.56B ($551 million) through Wednesday. It is not only far and away the top movie of the year globally, but is also nearly 20% bigger than 2020’s top worldwide title, China’s The Eight Hundred — and this after just six days of play, with more to come.

    While DC3 led the weekend, Beijing Culture’s time-travel comedy Hi, Mom was atop the daily charts from Monday-Wednesday and has grossed RMB 2.73B ($423M). Hi, Mom is projected by Maoyan to top out at RMB 5.28 ($817M), which would make it the No. 2 movie ever in the market. DC3 is eyeing RMB 4.51B ($698M), estimates Maoyan, a 33% local currency increase on the previous installment in the popular franchise.

    Overall, there were seven new local movies for the New Year session which rolled out beginning February 12; the public holiday in China ran from February 11-17, though celebrations continue. Through Wednesday, the titles above are rounded out by A Writer’s Odyssey (RMB 538.2/$83.32M), Boonie Bears: The Wild Life (RMB 407M/$63M), New Gods: Nezha Reborn (RMB240.1M/$37.2M), The Yin Yang Master (RMB 211M/$33M) and Endgame (151M/$23.4M).

    Xinhua reports that more than 155 million tickets were sold during the New Year frame, up from 130M in 2019. That’s reflective of pent-up demand for big new titles — especially given Detective Chinatown 3 was delayed by a year when Covid shuttered cinemas in early 2020 — and in part reflective of the increased number of screens in the market, which was 75,500 by the end of 2020, compared to just under 70,000 at the end of 2019.

    China was the first country severely hit by the coronavirus, and implemented strict lockdown measures across the board. After six months of cinema closures, it slowly re-acclimated audiences. That began in July 2020 with some import titles whose releases had been delayed by Covid (think: Dolittle) and library movies like the first Harry Potter and some older Christopher Nolan pics. Once the market was primed, China released The Eight Hundred to huge results last August. Notes an international exec, “What China is showing is that where the virus is under control and people feel safe, they’re coming back (to cinemas) in droves.” We’ve seen some similar phenomena in Korea and Japan, although with more Covid ebbs and flows affecting momentum.

    The early estimated RMB 7.78B Chinese New Year period (which also includes holdover play from movies like Disney-Pixar’s Soul), is already 38% of the total box office for 2020 in China. It’s also about 10% of 2020 global box office, 12% of international box office and 55% of domestic box office last year.

    For the first month and a half of 2021, China box office has crossed RMB 10B, according to state news media, meaning it’s already more than 50% of 2020’s full gross. The good news out of China hopefully serves as an indicator of recovery that will be seen in other markets as they get back up and running with new product.
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  9. #9
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    Mom beats Detective

    Feb 21, 2021 11:01am PT
    China Box Office: ‘Hi, Mom’ Overtakes Initial Frontrunner ‘Detective Chinatown 3’ in Total Sales


    By Rebecca Davis


    Beijing Culture
    The Beijing Culture-backed tear-jerking comedy “Hi, Mom” grossed $134 million this weekend to finally surpass Wanda Film’s record-breaking Chinese New Year holiday frontrunner “Detective Chinatown 3” in overall box office, having led the latter in single-day returns since Monday.

    It is now only the sixth film to ever have grossed more than RMB400 million ($62 million) in China, a feat achieved by “Detective Chinatown 3,” “Avengers: Endgame” and four other local titles.

    The upset shows just how important strong word of mouth is these days in the world’s largest film market. With its 2020 debut delayed due to COVID-19, “Detective Chinatown 3” had a year-long head start over its competitors. While its aggressive promotional campaigns and the strength of its franchise pulled in audiences initially to generate a world record-breaking debut weekend, they have proven no match for the grassroots support that has emerged for the comedy that has organically captured hearts across the country.

    The Jia Ling-helmed film has consistently received the highest user ratings among all seven of the blockbusters that premiered on Lunar New Year’s Day Feb. 12, and currently ranks 8.1 out of 10 on the popular Douban platform. “Detective Chinatown 3” languishes in last with 5.6 out of 10.

    Inspired by the life story of her own mother, who passed away when Jia was 19, and adapted from a play she wrote in 2016, “Hi, Mom” tells the emotional tale of a woman who travels back in time to befriend her own mother and try to make her life better.

    It has currently sold a total of $624 million (RMB4.05 billion) in tickets, while “Detective Chinatown 3” has sold $621 million (RMB4.03 billion), according to real-time data from Maoyan pulled just after midnight local time. Over the weekend, it brought in $134 million, more than triple second place “Detective,” which grossed $42.3 million.

    From sales in just the China market alone, both titles have now far surpassed the world’s highest grossing film of 2020: China’s “The Eight Hundred,” which earned $468 million.

    The strong performance of “Hi, Mom” has been a boon to its main backer Beijing Culture, which has floundered financially over the last two years but seen a recent uptick in its stock price in wake of the hit.

    In third place was Huace Film and TV’s “A Writer’s Odyssey,” which earned a further $20.2 million this weekend to bring its current cume up to $113 million (RMB733 million).

    In fourth was the Andy Lau-starring “Endgame,” which has had strong word of mouth as the second highest-rated title of the holiday but languished in last place until now due to lower numbers of scheduled screenings. It made $14.7 million this weekend and now has a 10-day cume of $42.9 million (RMB278 million).

    Animations “Boonie Bears: The Wild Life” and “New Gods: Nezha Reborn” came in fifth and sixth, grossing $9.9 million and $9.17 million, bringing their cumes up to $77.7 million (RMB504 million) and $50.4 million (RMB327 million), respectively. In seventh was the Huayi-backed special effects-heavy fantasy film “The YinYang Master,” which brought in only a further $2.64 million. It has grossed $36.6 million (237.5 million) so far.

    Next Friday will see the release of Warner Brothers’ live-action animation hybrid reboot “Tom and Jerry,” which is currently the first foreign film to hit Chinese screens in the wake of the Chinese New Year holiday blackout on imports. Disney’s Southeast Asia-inspired “Raya and the Last Dragon” will then debut in cinemas on March 5.
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    2021 Year of the Ox
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  10. #10
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    $1.2 B. wow. I hope the US film market can come back so well

    China’s Lunar New Year box office revenues soar by a third to record US$1.21 billion as cinemas fill up amid travel restrictions
    Strict measures to avoid a return of Covid-19 meant more people stayed put during the festival season instead of returning to their hometowns for family reunions
    Ticket sales were dominated by the comedies Hi, Mom and Detective Chinatown 3, which became the fifth and sixth top-grossing movies of all time in the Chinese film market

    Cheryl Heng
    Published: 6:44pm, 23 Feb, 2021


    People queue to enter a cinema in Beijing on February 17, 2021. Photo: Xinhua
    China’s box office revenues climbed to a record high during the week-long Lunar New Year holiday, signalling a promising recovery of the world’s largest film market from the coronavirus fallout last year.
    Holiday movie ticket sales in China reached 7.8 billion yuan (US$1.21 billion) during the week of February 11 to 17, up 32.5 per cent from the 2019 Lunar New Year holiday, according to Chinese ticketing platform Maoyan Entertainment.
    Ticketing revenue for 2020 was omitted as cinemas were shut between January and July amid the coronavirus crisis.
    The resurgence at the box office may have been powered by stricter travel measures put in place to limit the annual Lunar New Year mass migration, in a bid to prevent a return of Covid-19. People stayed put during the festival season instead of returning to their hometowns for family reunions.
    Some 44 per cent of those surveyed by the Maoyan Research Institute said they watched more movies during this year’s festive season than they did in 2019, citing more leisure time as their main reason.
    More than 40 per cent of theatre screenings were fully booked in the first three days of the festive season.
    Box office sales in the period were dominated by family comedy Hi, Mom and mystery comedy Detective Chinatown 3. The films had raked in earnings of 4.24 billion yuan and 4.1 billion yuan respectively as of Tuesday, making them the fifth and sixth top-grossing movies of all time in the Chinese film market, a whisker behind Avengers 4: Endgame at 4.25 billion yuan, Maoyan data showed.
    Detective Chinatown 3, the third instalment of the popular cop series, led China’s box office in the first few days of the holiday with its strong franchise appeal and marketing buzz.
    But it was inched out of first place by the strong word-of-mouth appeal of comedian Jia Ling’s maiden directorial work, Hi, Mom, a heartwarming story of a daughter who travels back in time to meet her mother.
    The first six days of the Lunar New Year emerged as being among the top 10 highest box office revenue days in China’s film history, even as most theatres were limited to three-quarters seating capacity.
    China took the top spot for global cinema receipts last year, overtaking the US as the pandemic shut American cinemas for longer than their Chinese counterparts. Ticket sales in China came to 20 billion yuan (US$3.06 billion) in 2020, surpassing the US$2.28 billion of receipts in the US, according to data from Maoyan and Comscore.
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    Gene Ching
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