Chinese action-adventure title “Schemes in Antiques” conspired to stay atop the Chinese box office with a second weekend of $ 14.7 million, after opening week one last week with a strong start of $ 25.6 million over three days.
Originally slated for the first time in April, the story of intrigue around real and counterfeit artifacts by Hong Kong director Derek Kwok Chi-kin (“Wukong”) has now grossed $ 52 million (RMB 331 million) on a projection of $ 66.6 million, according to Maoyan data. . Produced by Hong Kong-based Emperor Motion Pictures, it stars fan favorite Ge You alongside Lei Jiayin, Li Xian and Xin Zhilei.
âSchemesâ edged out second-place comedy thriller âBe Somebody,â which grossed an additional $ 9.85 million in its fifth weekend to bring its current income to $ 133 million.
This week again, a new romantic comedy took third place: a film whose Chinese name translates to “We who loved before”. Newcomer Zhang Xiaolei’s heart-wrenching debut feature grossed $ 3.55 million, far less than first and second places.
That the three best weekend movies are so similar to last week’s – the most recent “Schemes” followed by “Be Somebody” and the $ 3 million debut of a harmless, flash-in rom-com -the-pan far behind – is an indication of the stagnation of China’s release schedule right now without major new blockbuster releases.
Viewers were thirsty enough for new content that the upcoming animation “I Am What I Am” came in third in presales, ahead of the widely sold-out war epic “The Battle of Changjin Lake”, which is in theaters. for 72 days since September. The first is slated for release on December 17, but has already grossed $ 2.33 million this weekend.
Directed by Wuhan native Sun Haipeng (“Kung Food”), the colorful tale tells the story of a young boy and his gang of companions who dream of winning the country’s biggest lion dance competition with the help of a former prima dancer. .
This week, “Battle” earned an additional $ 1.44 million, bringing its total to $ 903 million.
Meanwhile, âOh! My Gran â- the first Korean film to release in China in six years – continues to hurt, with virtually no screenings allocated (an average of 0.4% of total national screenings each day). It has only grossed $ 394,000 (2.5 million RMB) so far since its debut on December 3, and currently ranks outside the top 20 movies at the box office.