Chinese Box Office: "Journey to the West" Run Extended So It Can Break "Lost in Thailand"'s Record

Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons

In my previous Chinese box office report, I wrote that Stephen Chow's "Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons" would get close, but not beat "Lost in Thailand" for the record of highest-grossing Chinese film of all time. Huayi Brothers, the company behind "Journey to the West," apparently agrees with me. Originally slated to end its run by the end of this week, they're extending its engagement until April 7th, which should be enough time for it to capture the all-time crown.

Meanwhile, the fantasy-comedy topped the charts for the fifth consecutive week, grossing $10M and extended its total to $191.5M. It needs to make another $10M or more in the next month to surpass "Lost in Thailand."

Peter Jackson's "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" repeated at second with $8.3M, bringing its total to a solid $45.5M after three weeks. Worldwide, the fantasy film has taken in more than $1B.

Occupying the third spot with a decent $6.7M after four days is the debut of "Upside Down, " a big budget sci-fi/romance starring Kirsten Dunst and Jim Sturgess. With a budget of $50M and only getting a limited release in the U.S., I don't think it'll make back its cost.

Another debut landed in fourth place. Wong Jing’s “Princess and Seven Kung Fu Masters,” an action-comedy featuring Sammo Hung and Bruce Leung, took in a decent $4.5M in three days. The trailer looks just as silly as the title.
“Les Miserables” raked in $3.7M for the fifth spot. In ten days, it has taken in an underwhelming $7.7M.

Rounding out the top ten are “Stolen” ($3.2M, $6M total), “Dredd” ($1.8M, $4.4M), “Fall in Love” ($1.1M), “Say Yes” ($0.9M, $31.2M), and “The Iron Lady” ($0.6M). “Say Yes” looks like it’ll end its run with about $32M, another huge hit for Huang Bo. Meryl Streep’s Oscar-winning “The Iron Lady” bombed pretty hard in China.

Next week, Bruce Willis will try to get a bailout from China with “A Good Day to Die Hard” since it underwhelmed in the U.S. Unless it does gangbusters in China, I doubt there’ll be a six installment as promised by Willis. The latest “Die Hard” did $63.3M after a month in the U.S. and will probably end its run there with less than $70M, the lowest grossing film of the franchise. The previous entry, “Live Free or Die Hard,” did $134.5M in 2007.

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