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China shows 007 the love

'Casino' has boffo $1.5 million opening

James Bond has opened with a bang in China.

Sony’s “Casino Royale” cashed in with $1.5 million at 470 playdates on its Tuesday opening, plus Monday previews. That’s 6% better than the first day of “The Da Vinci Code,” which went on to gross more than $13 million.

It’s the first time a Bond pic has been on the bigscreen in China. Sony’s promoted “Casino” extensively with Daniel Craig, Eva Green, helmer Martin Campbell and producer Barbara Broccoli attending Monday’s preem in Beijing and Tuesday’s in Shanghai.

Chinese censors approved the pic, which opened more than two months ago in most markets, without any cuts. Chinese run for “Casino” may be aided by attendance spike during Chinese New Year celebrations in mid-February.

The international cume for “Casino” has hit $407.5 million and worldwide is at $573 million — 34th highest of all time.

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