• Box Office

China Box Office June 4, 2023

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse led the Chinese box office charts this weekend with $18.05 million grossed over the three-day weekend. It is the biggest international territory haul for the movie’s release so far.

Sony’s animated sequel to Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse tells the story of Spider-Man (voiced by Shameik Moore) and Spider-Woman’s (Hailee Steinfeld) new adventures in the multiverse battling a powerful villain with the help of the Spider-People.

The film is directed by Joaquim Dos Santos, Kemp Powers and Justin K. Thompson. The original film opened in China at $26 million and ended up grossing $63 million through its run in 2018.

Fast X slipped to the No. 2 position with $130.61 million grossed over 19 days with a weekend take of $7.98 million. It will probably not reach F9’s numbers – that film grossed $215 million in China – almost 30% of its international earnings – and more than the N. American total of $173 million. One more installment is due, Fast X: Part 2, in 2025.

A restored version of Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki’s 1986 animated film Castle in the Sky took third place on Sunday with $11.24 million over four days with its Thursday opening. It was the first film from the animation house, Studio Ghibli, co-founded by Miyazaki. (Mark Hamill dubbed the voice of the villain Muska in the original release.)

Another Japanese animated film, Doraemon the Movie: Nobita’s Sky Utopia, ended the weekend at No. 4 with $11.42 million, edged out by Castle with its stronger Sunday gross. It too opened on Thursday. This is the 42nd iteration of the animated franchise based on the Doraemon manga series by Fujiko F. Fujio and is directed by Takumi Doyama.

The Chinese comedy Godspeed is fifth on the charts with $159.42 million grossed over 38 days and a weekend gross of $3.97 million. The film continues to resonate with Chinese fans with its story of a prospective son-in-law trying to win over his fiancée’s father as the family takes a road trip together. It is directed by Xiaoxing Yi and stars Yuan Chang, Chengcheng Fan and Li Ma.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is at No. 6 with $87.11 million grossed over 31 days.

Born to Fly, the Chinese Top Gun wannabe ended in seventh place. The film has now earned $122.20 million over 38 days. While it has stayed on the top ten charts for over a month, it is not quite the blockbuster the propaganda film was touted to be.

The film is the directorial debut of Liu Xiaoshi who previously made promos for the Chinese army. It stars Wang Yibo, who started his career as a K-pop singer in the band Uniq, and Hu Jun as the leader of the team.

A new Chinese animated film, Qiaohu and the Fantastic Magic Circus, takes the No. 8 spot with $0.81 million over four days. This is another franchise centered around a little boy, Quiaohu, who has many adventures with his friends.

The Chinese romance Awakening Spring takes ninth place with $1.94 million grossed over ten days. The Mandarin-language film is directed by Wang Mu and stars Wang Ziwen and Yin Fang. It tells the story of two people who come together at low points in their lives and struggle to keep the relationship going.

Rounding out the top ten is the international disappointment, Disney’s The Little Mermaid. It has only grossed $3.76 million in ten days and looks to be the first Disney movie in a while that will earn most of its grosses domestically.

The film was review-bombed – negative ratings given to a movie so it will rate lower – in certain territories as trolls were angered that the lead actor is Black. It’s unclear whether that happened in China. However, Disney took pains to make Halle Bailey’s skin look blue on Chinese posters, a strategy that didn’t seem to work, given the failure of the movie.

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts will open in China on June 9. Paramount Pictures released a photo of a Transformers installation in Beijing showing statues of Optimus Primal and Optimus Prime set up on June 2.

The fourth movie, 2014’s Transformers: Age of Extinction, was co-produced by CCTV’s China Movie Channel, was shot extensively in Chinese locations and featured actress Li Bingbing. The new film will also be released in IMAX.

Source for all numbers: entgroup.cn