Weekly Box Office: Romance and “Finding Mr. Right” Reign

By on April 19, 2013 in Movies

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Above: “Finding Mr. Right” and “A Wedding Invitation” are the top performers in last week’s mainland Chinese box office.

Mainland Chinese theatergoers are in the mood for love. Romantic comedies continued to reign at the box office, cementing the genre’s increasing profitability.  Finding Mr. Right <北京遇上西雅图> maintained its top position for the fourth consecutive week in China’s box office, and surpassed the 500 million RMB mark this week.

Finding Mr. Right, which stars Tang Wei (汤唯) and Wu Xiubo (吴秀波) tells the story of a young Chinese woman who found herself pregnant and stranded in the United States due to unforeseen circumstances. At her lowest point, she meets a doctor, Frank ,and through their hilarious interactions, discovers true love and more.

In second place in weekly box office receipts is A Wedding Invitation, a romantic film that stars Eddie Peng (彭于晏) and Bai Baihe (白百何). After Bai Bahe rejected Eddie’s marriage proposal due to his lack of financial stability, the couple meets again five years later and their sparks are still fiery. A Wedding Invitation especially appealed to younger audiences and after merely 3 days of its release, it already amassed more than 61 million RMB.

The success of Finding Mr. Right and A Wedding Invitation are significant, as viewers turn away from larger-budgeted Hong Kong films, such as director Johnnie To’s (杜琪峰) Drug War <毒战> and Saving General Yang <忠烈杨家将>. While Drug War has grossed a respectable 129.12 million RMB to-date, Saving General Yang has disappointingly earned only 55.78 million RMB after 11 days of release.

Local-made films took up the first 3 positions in the weekly box office charts. Comedy, The Chef, The Actor, The Scoundrel <厨子·戏子·痞子> was in third place, grossing 248.16 million RMB to-date.

However, the results may change drastically this week as new movies are released. Hollywood’s GI Joe: Retaliation, director Ren Pengyuan’s (任鹏远) action thriller, The Deadly Bullet <刺夜>, and romantic film Sweet Eighteen <甜蜜18岁> are new films arriving in cinemas. Machi Action <变身超人> starring Wilson Chen (陈柏霖) and the Chinese release of The Croods will also be competing for the box office sales this weekend.

In the Hong Kong box office, Hollywood film, Oblivion took over the top spot as the popular G.I. Joe 3D Retaliation is slowing in sales.  Conspirators <同謀>, starring Aaron Kwok (郭富城)and Nick Cheung (張家輝), generated only lukewarm sales of 3.89 million HKD in its opening weekend. While the reception for Saving General Yang is more positive in Hong Kong than in mainland China, the film’s cumulative box office receipts under-performed to expectation despite its superstar cast.

Mainland China Box Office 

Week Ending April 14, 2013
(in millions RMB)

Rank

Film

Weekly

Cumulative

Days in Theaters

1

Finding Mr. Right      <北京遇上西雅图>

74.71

466.12

25

2

A Wedding Invitation <分手合约>

61.35

61.35

3

3

The Chef, The Actor, The Scoundrel          <厨子·戏子·痞子>

54.59

248.16

17

4

Drug War                  <毒战>

48.10

129.12

13

5

Oz The Great and Powerful

28.85

 159.69

17

 

Hong Kong Box Office 
Week Ending April 14, 2013
$ in millions HKD

Rank

Film

Weekly

Cumulative

Days in Theaters

1

 Oblivion

$7.96

$7.96

4

2

Conspirators <同謀>

$3.89

$3.89

4

3

G.I. Joe 3D Retaliation

$2.24

$24.64

18

4

Saving General Yang <忠烈楊家將>

$2.02

$5.14

11

5

Finding Mr. Right        <北京遇上西雅圖>

$1.80

$7.67

18

Box Office figures from Sohu.com and HKFilmart.com

This article is written by Karen for JayneStars.com.

10 comments to Weekly Box Office: Romance and “Finding Mr. Right” Reign

  1. Larry 3 says:

    Look at the top ranking mainland movies. No wonder “Saving General Yang” is flailing.

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    • dd replied:

      Oops. Haha. All good.

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    • Terminator replied:

      I think it reflects the maturing process of the Mainland movie audience.

      They are no longer drawn only by gimmicks and idols. HK directors will have an even tougher time ahead

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      • dd replied:

        Sup Term.

        I tried to make sense of this when I first saw the charts. This is how I see it:

        Saving Private Ry-….duh….General Ryan….Yang-
        18-35 key male demographic will watch this with a bunch of guy friends
        35+ male history buffs who like watching wuxia will take their wives to watch it with them. And you know what? The same demographic has an overlap with Johnnie To’s “Drug War”. No-one’s gonna watch Ekin and his crappy hairdo when Louis Koo and Sun Honglei shoot guns and handle drugs and stuff.

        As for Finding Mr. Right and Wedding Invitation:
        13 and over girls will watch these with a group of girlfriends. The older girls will drag their boyfriend(s) to watch it with them. They’ll probably watch it more than once as well.

        And let’s not forget the drawing power in these movies. The amazing Tang Wei, Eddie Peng (not gay but he’s damn handsome) and the queen of Chinese box office Bai Baihe.

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      • Terminator replied:

        With General Yang, I think they made one of the biggest marketing blunder in recent years. As you pointed out, the key core are the 18-35 males. But guess how they marketed the film: an idol drama with focus on the “shuainess” of the cast. This proves to be a turn off to most of the core audience.

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  2. Nelly says:

    The box office is opposite on both ends. What’s doing good in the Mainland is doing horribly in Hong Kong and what’s doing good in Hong Kong is doing horribly in the Mainland. I feel for the Hong Directors because they constantly have to find ways to hit gold in both areas. And it don’t help when the audience keep choosing Hollywood films over their own domestic films. Even the crappy Hollywood films get more attention in Hong Kong. Sad!

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    • apple replied:

      Yeah correct !

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    • dd replied:

      HK cinema is at a decline because we’ve basically become a creative dry-well. The setting is always the same and the themes are pretty much similar with the same actors over and over.

      And then there’s “Saving Gen. Yang” which is a HK production made to cash in on the Mainland market. No.
      Firstly, mainlanders will not watch our crappy films as they’d support their own films first. Secondly, my god, Lam Fung you ruined everything.

      Now, Gi Joe and Die Hard 5 did great. Long-established and dependable Hollywood production, golden-haired actors, absolutely shredded, babes, guns, explosions. It’s a breath of fresh air when the backdrop is somewhere you don’t know instead of someplace you always walk past when you go to work in the morning.

      And speaking of explosions, Chin Ka-Lok as an action director…maaaaan. Thank god he didn’t win, I would’ve quit HK cinema forever.

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      • apple replied:

        @dd your comment also make sense he..he…making me laughing here.

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  3. Hannahh says:

    ok, must check those movies out.

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