China Box Office: ‘Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse’ Wins Opening Weekend

“Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” grabbed top place at the mainland China box office over the weekend with an opening $17.2 million (RMB122 million) score.

Giant screen company, Imax reports that $2.7 million, or more than 16% of the film’s China total, came from its Middle Kingdom venues.

Chinese online ticketing agency Maoyan forecasts that “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” will earn a total of RMB241 million or $34 million at current exchange rates.

“Fast X,” which had driven off with the spoils for the past two weekends, was overtaken on its third lap and achieved $7.7 million in second place, according to data from consultancy firm Artisan Gateway. After 17 days in Chinese cinemas, “Fast X” has accumulated $124 million, making it the highest-grossing imported titled released this year in China ahead of Japanese animation “Suzume.”

Maoyan has revised its forecast for “Fast X” yet again. It is now predicting a lifetime score of RMB932 million ($132 million), having initially forecast RMB728 ($104 million) and then given it at least two upgrades.

Two Japanese animated newcomers, Studio Ghibli’s “Castle in the Sky” from 1986, and current year franchise title “Doraemon: Nobita’s Sky Utopia” took third and fourth places respectively, easing Disney’s live-action “The Little Mermaid” out of the top five chart in only its second weekend.

“Castle in the Sky” earned $6.0 million (RMB42.8 million) over the conventional Friday to Sunday weekend and built a $10.7 million (RMB76 million) cumulative including its Thursday release day. Similarly, the “Doraemon” title also enjoyed a June 1 release and pulled in $4.2 million (RMB29.6 million) over the weekend for a four-day running total of $10.9 million (RMB77.1 million).

Chinese title, “Godspeed” which released at the end of April held on to fifth place over the weekend. It added $3.8 million for a cumulative of $152 million (RMB1.08 billion).

“The Little Mermaid,” which received a decidedly frosty reception in China, sank to tenth place according to provisional figures from other data providers. Its cumulative languishes at some $3.77 million after ten days.

The nationwide weekend box office total weighed in at $43.9 million. That is 46% ahead when compared with a sickly 2022, according to Artisan Gateway, and 19% below the running total at the same point in 2019.

The consultancy reported that the month of May, which includes an important week-long holiday period, delivered gross box office of $487 million (RMB3.4 billion), a more than three-fold increase compared with last year’s COVID-stricken May, but a 30% lag compared with 2019.

It also calculates that – despite the return of largely normal Hollywood releasing in China since the beginning of 2023 – Chinese language content has amassed a 79% market share in the first five months of the year. The remaining 21% achieved by foreign-language titles had to be shared by Hollywood and Japanese films, with “Suzume” and “The First Slam Dunk” having performed strongly.

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