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Monkey King has record opening in China

Monkey King has record opening in China

By Kevin Ma

Sat, 01 February 2014, 20:45 PM (HKT)

Box Office News

The Monkey King 西遊記之大鬧天宮 (2014) had a record-breaking opening day at the China box office on the first day of the Lunar New Year holiday.

Released in 3-D and IMAX 3-D, the big-budget fantasy film – based on the early chapters of Journey of the West – made RMB121 million (US$20.0 million) from 2.81 million admissions on approximately 8,600 screens. Including previews, it has made a total of RMB123 million (US$20.2 million).

The Soi CHEANG 鄭保瑞 film, starring Donnie YEN 甄子丹, broke Iron Man 3 (2013)'s RMB105 million (US$17.3 million) record to set a new all-time high for opening day gross. It also set the record for the highest gross for a film on Lunar New Years day and the fastest domestic film to cross the RMB100 million (US$16.5 million) mark.

It accounted for approximately 34.9% of all screenings nationwide.

Where Are We Going, Dad? 爸爸去哪兒 (2014), the feature film expansion of the hit reality show, also opened huge. From 2.76 million admissions, the documentary – featuring the show's original cast — made RMB88.2 million (US$14.6 million), beating Tiny Times 1 小時代 (2013) to become the best opening day gross for a Chinese 2-D film.

At an average of 87 admissions per screening, it also secured a higher per-screening admissions than The Monkey King, which had 81 admissions per screening.

Gambling comedy From Vegas to Macau 賭城風雲 (2014) was third-placed with RMB24.8 million (US$4.09 million) from 752,000 admissions, including previews. The CHOW Yun-fat 周潤發-starrer accounted for 19.5% of all screenings. It was reportedly the second-placed film in Hong Kong yesterday, behind Golden Chickensss 金雞sss (2014).

After making RMB8.06 (US$1.33 million) from single-day previews last weekend, Huayi Brothers Media Corporation 華誼兄弟傳媒股份有限公司' EX-Files 前任攻略 (2014) opened with only RMB5.65 million (US$932,000) from 166,000 admissions yesterday. The romantic comedy, starring popular actors HAN Geng 韓庚 and Ryan ZHENG 鄭愷, accounted for only 10.4% of all screenings on opening day.

Despite State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SAPPRFT) 國家新聞出版廣電總局's recent efforts to stop cinemas from under-reporting box office income, netizens have been posting photos of Monkey King and Where Are We Going, Dad? tickets with incorrect ticket price and handwritten information on Sina's Weibo microblog. On its official Weibo, distributor Beijing Enlight Pictures Co Ltd 北京光線影業有限公司 vows to closely monitor the situation.

Last year, Stephen CHOW 周星馳's Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons 西游 降魔篇 (2013), a prequel to the Monkey King mythology, was the top film during the seven-day holiday with RMB510 million (US$84.1 million). It ends its run with RMB1.24 billion (US$204 million) on the Mainland, including a major box office takings boost on Valentine's Day.

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