Thursday, October 21, 2021

China’s ‘Battle at Lake Changjin’ claims global box office crown

China's 'The Battle at Lake Changjin' was the highest grossing film anywhere in the world over the past weekend, with $203 million

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China’s ‘The Battle at Lake Changjin’ was the highest grossing film anywhere in the world over the past weekend, with $203 million, according to variety.com.

That score was fractionally lower than the combined total earned by ‘No Time to Die’ ($119 million in international markets) and by ‘Venom: Let There Be Carnage’ ($90.2 million in North America).

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The film was the far away winner in mainland China, where it was released on Thursday, a day ahead of the October 1, National Day holiday.

Over four days on release, it earned $234 million, according to consultancy Artisan Gateway.

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Additional data from local provider Ent Group showed that ‘Battle’ enjoyed a massive 157,000 screenings per day.

That put it ahead of ‘My Country, My Parents,’ which earned $70.6 million over the weekend proper and a Venom’-like $90.4 million total over four days.

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Both films are examples of the patriotic triumphalism that has come to typify the Chinese box office since it re-opened, after the pandemic in July last year, and both capitalise on the sentiment stirred up around the annual celebrations of the country’s birth, some 72 years ago.

‘Changjin’ earned $12.9 million of its total from Imax giant screens, making it the third biggest Imax opening weekend of all time behind sci-fi title ‘The Wandering Earth’ and Chinese New Year comedy ‘Detective Chinatown 3’.

Made with a production budget reported to be over $200 million, the film has three of China’s top directors: Chen Kaige, Tsui Hark and Dante Lam.

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