‘Detective Vs Sleuths’ Holds Lead at China Box Office With $14 Million Weekend

Hong Kong-produced crime action film “Detective Vs Sleuths” again took top honors at the mainland China box office with a $14.2 million weekend gross. The film was in its second weekend at the top and its third week of release.

Consultancy firm, Artisan Gateway reported that the film has now advanced to a 17-day cumulative score of $85.3 million (RMB580 million).

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“Lighting Up the Stars,” which enjoyed three weekends at the top of the chart before falling to third place, bounced back to second. It earned $11.6 million (RMB79.2 million) over the latest weekend, to produce a cumulative of $231 million (RMB1.57 billion) since release on June 24.

Last week’s second placed opener, ‘Mozart From Space” flipped to third place. It earned $6.4 million (RMB48.3 million), for a 10-day cumulative of $29.1 million (RMB198 million).

“Jurassic World: Dominion” added $2.6 million (RMB17.4 million) for a cumulative of $153 million (RMB1.04 billion) over nearly six weeks. That makes it the biggest import film of the year in China, but only the 30th best Hollywood performer of all time in the market.

The weekend’s top new release, “Love Can’t Be Said” opened in fifth place with $2.2 million (RMB14.7 million). Another youth romance, the film is distributed y HY Media.

Nationwide, the aggregate gross dropped to $40.6 million, from $57 million the previous weekend. Artisan Gateway reports a year-to-date box office cumulative of $2.86 billion. That is 35% below the same point last year.

China continues to be affected by rolling control measures as cities and provinces are forced to react to new outbreaks of COVID. These may be holding back a box office recovery.

Just as great a drag is the lack of significant new release titles. The impact of COVID uncertainty on local film releases and the currently limited number of film imports means that there are few signs of cinemagoing making a significant breakout beyond recent levels.

Mid-summer in China is often considered as a ‘blackout period’ or ‘national film support month’ when Hollywood new releases are sidelined. Pre-sales suggest that sci-fi comedy “Moonman” could be the chart leader when it releases on Friday. Two minor U.S. titles – “The Lost City” and “My Little Pony: A New Generation” – are also set for release next weekend.

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