Monday, June 24, 2024

‘The Boy and the Heron’ Huge Five-Day Opening

Oscar-winning Japanese animation film “The Boy and the Heron” earned a chart-topping $34.9 million between Friday and Sunday at the mainland China box office. Over its full five-day opening run, it took an even more spectacular $73 million.

China was the last major territory to play the Studio Ghibli-produced fantasy in cinemas – it released in its native Japan in July and is imminently headed to streaming in many other territories – but that did not stop Chinese audiences from lapping it up.

While most films release in China on a Friday, “The Boy and the Heron” was given a Wednesday outing in order to capture momentum from the Thursday-to-Saturday Qingming public holiday.

Consultancy firm Artisan reports that it earned RMB248 million ($34.9 million) over the conventional Friday-to-Sunday weekend. But including some RMB270 million ($38.1 million) of business from Wednesday and Thursday, it set the biggest opening of the year by a non-mainland Chinese movie.

Local data providers with daily analysis show a strong Friday and Saturday, followed by a steep tumble on Sunday, which was a normal working day for many people, following the holiday. Nevertheless, the five-day haul makes China the film’s biggest box office market. Previously, it earned $60.7 million in Japan, $$46 million in North America, $14.8 million in South Korea and $12.3 million in France.

“Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire,” which opened a week earlier, enjoyed a $21.9 million second weekend. After ten days in Chinese theaters, it has a cumulative of $93.5 million. That is the highest score for a Hollywood film in China since “Fast X” in May last year.

Giant screen operator Imax reported that the two top titles shared its nearly 800 venues in China, with “The Boy and the Heron” earning $2.5 million of its total from the circuit.

“Kung Fu Panda 4” was several magnitudes weaker. It earned $4.7 million (RMB33.7 million) in its third weekend in China. That gives it a cumulative of $$42.7 million (RMB303 million) in the Middle Kingdom.

“Dwelling by the West Lake,” a Chinese crime drama directed by Gu Xiaogang, opened in fourth place. It earned $4.3 million (RMB30.5 million). It too released on Wednesday and has a cumulative of $8.5 million (RMB60.7 million) after five days.

“The Victims,” another Chinese crime film, directed by He Wenchao, earned $3.9 million (RMB28 million) between Friday and Sunday. With another Wednesday opening, the film has a $7.9 million (RMB55.8 million) five-day cumulative.

Nationwide, box office was worth an aggregate $$78.3 million. That gives China a running total of $2.49 billion so far this year. That figure is up 6% compared with 2023, according to Artisan Gateway, and also makes China the biggest theatrical market in the world so far in 2024.

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HomeReviews Films'The Boy and the Heron' Huge Five-Day Opening

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