The Chinese film “The Battle of Changjin Lake” was the highest grossing film in the world over the past weekend, winning $ 203 million.
This score was slightly lower than the cumulative total obtained by “No Time to Die” ($ 119 million in international markets) and by “Venom: Let There Be Carnage” ($ 90.2 million in North America).
The film was the winner by far in mainland China, where it was released on Thursday, a day before the Oct. 1 national holiday. In four days after its release, it grossed $ 234 million, according to consulting firm Artisan Gateway.
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Additional data from local provider Ent Group showed that “Battle” enjoyed a massive 157,000 screenings per day and was watched by 25.5 million ticket buyers between Friday and Sunday.
That puts it ahead of “My Country, My Parents,” which grossed $ 70.6 million over the weekend itself and a four-day “Venom-like” total of $ 90.4 million.
Both titles are examples of the patriotic triumphalism that has characterized the Chinese box office since its reopening, following the pandemic in July last year, and both capitalize on the sentiment generated around the country’s annual birth celebrations, some 72 years since.
“Changjin” made $ 12.9 million of its total thanks to the giant Imax screens, making it the third biggest Imax opening weekend of all time behind the sci-fi title “The Wandering Earth “and the Chinese New Year comedy” Detective Chinatown 3 “.
Produced with an estimated production budget of over $ 200 million, the film features three of Greater China’s greatest directors: Chen Kaige, Tsui Hark and Dante Lam.
It is an epic war film praising the triumphs of Chinese soldiers fighting the United Nations forces led by the United States at the start of the Korean War (1950-1953). China describes its involvement in the war as an act of self-defense and support for North Korean leader Kim Il-sung. In Chinese it is called the war to resist American aggression and help Korea.
The film was produced by Bona Film Group and stars Wu Jing, star and director of the hit war films “Wolf Warrior”, and pop idol turned actor Jackson Yee. (Wu also stars in and is credited as one of four co-directors on “My Country, My Parents”.)
In a distant third place, the Chinese-made animation “Dear Tutu: Operation T-Rex” earned $ 3.5 million over three days.
Artisan Gateway shows that the weekend aggregate was $ 295 million, or about RMB 1.9 billion.
That brings the box office in China to $ 5.31 billion since the start of the year, a figure 27% lower than the same point before the 2019 pandemic. During the seven-day period of the National Day in 2019, box office revenue reached 4.5 billion RMB. .