×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Transformers 3’ tops 2011 Chinese B.O.

'Kung Fu Panda 2' comes in second

Hollywood tentpoles dominated a boffo 2011 for the Chinese film biz, preliminary data has shown, with “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” taking a storming $170 million in the world’s fastest-growing major movie market.

Ever since “Avatar” made $210 million in China, Hollywood has kept a beady eye on the performance of tentpoles here, even though Beijing’s quota system allows only 20 foreign films in the country per year on a revenue-sharing basis — and the 15% cut of the revenue is lower than elsewhere.

China’s enthusiastic cinemagoers did not disappoint.

While data from the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television is due out at this month, early indicators are that Hollywood movies did extremely well.

Data from Entgroup, which compiles China’s B.O. data, showed that the hit of the year was “Transformers 3,” followed by “Kung Fu Panda 2” with $95 million.

The top earning local movie was Zhang Yimou’s Christian Bale starrer “The Flowers of War,” which opened Dec. 16 and took in $78 million by the end of the year. It’s cume is now $83 million.

The total gross for 2011 looks on track to sweep past $2 billion for the first time. It had reached $1.9 billion by the end of November and December is traditionally a busy period. Total B.O. in 2010 was $1.62 billion.

Data shows that 218 pics screened in China last year. By some estimates, around 500 were made in China in 2011.

There were 145 locally and co-produced movies in China last year and 78 imported movies, including Hong Kong and Taiwan films.

The government has made vague promises to free up its quota system for foreign pics, but there was not much evidence of this — there were exactly 20 revenue-share foreign movies released by the end of December.

A further 36 films were shown on a flat-fee basis and there were seven “special” films, which includes 3D or Imax productions. Altogether 35 films were imported from the U.S. last year.

The forecast for 2012 is again for 20 revenue-share films, 30 foreign movies on a flat-fee basis, and a “flexible” number of 3D and Imax films.

Hollywood 2011 tentpoles “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows” and “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol” have passed censors and will open on Jan. 15 and Jan. 28 respectively, to coincide with the lucrative Lunar New Year holiday period.

Other 2011 Hollywood fare expected in early 2012 include “Conan the Barbarian,” “Killer Elite,” “Trespass” and “Drive.”

More Film

  • Bertrand Tavernier Hosts Night of Cinema

    Bertrand Tavernier Hosts Night of Cinema Inspired Orchestra in Paris

    Flanked by UniFrance president Serge Toubiana and the National Orchestra of France, filmmaker Bertrand Tavernier stood before a rapt crowd at Paris’ Maison de la Radio this past Saturday to introduce an evening dedicated to French film scores called “May the Music Begin!” That moniker – a reference to the original French title of his [...]

  • Orange Studio Sells Out 'Serial (Bad)

    Orange Studio Sells Out 'Serial (Bad) Weddings 2,' 'City Hunter' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Paris-based Orange Studio has nearly sold out its two French comedy highlights, Philippe de Chauveron’s “Serial (Bad) Weddings 2” and Philippe Lacheau’s “City Hunter.” “Serial (Bad) Weddings 2,” which opened the UniFrance Rendez-Vous in Paris last week, is the sequel of the smash hit film which grossed over $148 million worldwide. The movie has been [...]

  • Danmarks Sønner, en film af Ulaa

    Trailer for Rotterdam Competition Opener 'Sons of Denmark' Released (EXCLUSIVE)

    Variety has been given exclusive access to the trailer for the opening film of Rotterdam Film Festival’s Tiger Competition, “Sons of Denmark.” The film is a political thriller set in Denmark in 2025, a year after a bomb attack in Copenhagen, when ethnic tensions are running high. An ultra-nationalist politician, Martin Nordahl, and his National [...]

  • Operation Red Sea review

    Chinese Entertainment Industry Braces for a 'Cold Winter' in 2019

    Winter is here for the Chinese entertainment industry, a half-dozen top-tier industry professionals concurred in Beijing at the launch last week of Tencent Entertainment’s annual data-filled white paper. China’s box office hit new heights in 2018, raking in about $9 billion, but it was also a year of drastic regulatory changes and a government tax [...]

  • Indie Sales Acquires Martin Lund's Nordic

    Indie Sales Acquires Nordic Coming-Of-Age 'Psychobitch' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Paris-based company Indie Sales has acquired Martin Lund’s Norwegian coming-of-age drama “Psychobitch” which is headlined by Elli Rhiannon Müller Osbourne (“Utoya: July 22”). “Psychobitch” marks the first feature film of Martin Lund, who made his debut with “Twigson Ties the Knot,” a local box office hit, and followed up with “The Almost Man,” which won [...]

  • Studiocanal has sold Jean Paul Gaultier's

    Jean Paul Gaultier's 'Freak And Chic' Documentary Sells For Studiocanal (EXCLUSIVE)

    Underscoring the strength and scope of French fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier’s legacy around the world, the documentary “Jean Paul Gaultier Freak And Chic,” which chronicles the making of Gaultier’s ongoing popular show in Paris, has been luring distributors in key markets. Sold by Studiocanal and produced by Capa, the documentary has already been picked [...]

  • Korea Box Office: 'MAL·MO·E' and 'Inside

    Korea Box Office: 'MAL·MO·E' and 'Inside Me' Remain on Top

    There was no change at the top of the Korean box office, as local titles “MAL·MO·E: The Secret Mission” and “Inside Me (a.k.a. The Dude in Me)” dominated a second weekend. Lotte’s “MAL·MO·E” earned $4.79 million from 618,000 admissions between Friday and Sunday for a total of $16.7 million from 2.23 million admissions after two [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content