The week’s most notable release was the bloodstained, tear-soaked, seaside local crime thriller, Back to the Wharf, which finished second with a $ 7.09 million debut. It plays Zhang Yu (“Dying to Survive”, “A Cool Fish”) and was directed by Li Xiaofeng. His first feature film, the drama “Nezha” from 2014, premiered that year at the Busan International Film Festival in the New Currents section, but earned only $ 82,130 in Chinese theaters.
The patriotic omnibus film “My People, My Homeland”, which has now been shown in cinemas for well over a month, took third place with 4.86 million US dollars. It has grossed a total of $ 416 million (RMB 2.75 billion), making it one of the world’s greatest films of the year and the 21st highest-grossing film of all time in China.
Two Japanese animations rounded out this week’s top 5: Digimon Adventure: Last Evolution Kizuna, which had sales of $ 3.45 million, and the critically acclaimed film Mirai from 2018, which premiered on Friday and grossed $ 1.23 million in the first three days.
“Mirai”, produced by Tokyo-based Studio Chizu, is director Mamoru Hosoda’s first film to be released two years after its first debut in Cannes in the independently run Directors’ Fortnight section in China. It was nominated for Best Animated Feature at the Golden Globes and the Oscars. With that, it’s only the sixth anime and the first non-studio Ghibli title that has received an Academy nod.
Despite its awards, the older Japanese film did just a hair better than the local Chinese animation “Jiang Ziya: Legend of Deification,” which grossed $ 1.1 million that weekend. Since its debut on October 1, the company has earned $ 240 million (RMB 1.59 billion), making it the 32nd highest-grossing film in China of all time.
No other movie crossed the $ 1 million mark this weekend.
The Neil Marshall-led reboot of Hellboy is set to open in Chinese cinemas on Monday and will raise $ 127,000 with weekend pre-screenings and midnight screenings.
The film was ranked as one of the biggest box office flops of 2019, grossing just $ 22 million in the U.S. and $ 44.7 million globally, despite a production budget of $ 50 million. Maoyan’s early predictions suggest it will gross less than $ 7 million in China.
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