×

Distribution Successes Lift Profits at China’s Bona Film

HONG KONG — China’s Bona Film Group exceeded its own guidance with a third quarter net profit of $9.3 million. Net revenues were $100 million, compared with $35 million in the same period last year.

The numbers were driven by the runaway success of road movie “The Continent,” directed by first film by celebrity blogger and race driver Han Han. Bona also released “The White Haired Witch,” and two imported titles Paul W.S. Anderson’s “Pompeii” and Jaume Collet-Serra’s “Non Stop.”

Company founder and CEO Yu Dong described the result as a “tremendous success.”

In a conference call with financial analysts, Yu said that the company’s two main goals are to expand in the local Chinese business and in Hollywood, where Bona is planning to invest in and produce mainstream movies, making the company increasingly diversified and increasingly international. He said that the company’s focus on production and content ownership will stand it in good stead, even when compared with the financial fire power of Chinese Internet giant Alibaba and Wanda.

For the nine months to end of Sept. its revenues were $202 million ($107 million) and net profits of $7.99 million ($5.24 million). In forward guidance it said that last quarter profits would be in the $2.0-2.5 million range.

Yu said that the company had made efforts to strengthen its distribution team, to be able to vary marketing strategies and reach third-tier cities. “The Continent” scored RMB628 million ($102 million) at the box office, Bona’s highest ever gross. Released two weeks later “Witch” earned RMB390 million ($63.5 million). “Pompeii” scored RMB97.5 million ($15.9 million), “Non-Stop” managed RMB105 million ($17.1 million).

Yu said that the Tsui Hark-directed “The Taking of Tiger Mountain,” a 3D epic to be released on Dec. 24, could overtake “The Continent” to be the company’s biggest ever title at the box office. He revealed that the release date of Wong Kar-wai’s “The Grandmaster 3D” has now been pushed from this month to a Jan. 8, 2015 slot.

Yu revealed that it has green-lighted actioner “The Mekong River Action,” to be directed by Hong Kong’s Dante Lam, and “I am Somebody,” a drama about bit-part actors in Hengdian. Those were in addition to “Insanity” and a new Gordon Chan film “Secret Treasure,” the recently wrapped “Emperor Holidays” and “The Man From Macau 2.”

Bona’s multiplex business enjoyed revenue growth of 40% and ended the quarter with 22 theaters and 182 screens in operation. Yu said that it would open 6 more theaters with 60 screens by the end of the year.

More Biz

  • Roc Nation Label Names Shari Bryant

    Roc Nation Label Names Shari Bryant and Omar Grant Co-Presidents

    Roc Nation has named Shari Bryant and Omar Grant co-presidents of the Roc Nation Label, the company announced today. The two will lead the Roc Nation team to develop strategies for signed artists while continuing to build the talent roster, according to the announcement. “There is no better way to celebrate my 20th anniversary in the [...]

  • Bert Salke and Jennifer Salke

    Feds Looked Into Amazon Studios Chief Jennifer Salke in College Admissions Scandal

    Federal investigators looked into Amazon Studios chief Jennifer Salke and her husband, Fox 21 Television Studios president Bert Salke, as they conducted a sprawling probe of cheating in elite college admissions, a source close to the case told Variety. It does not appear, however, that prosecutors will charge the Salkes in the case. The Salkes [...]

  • Variety Cord Cutting Placeholder Cable

    Big Blackout Looms as CBS, AT&T Go Down to Wire on Renewal Talks

    A blackout affecting CBS stations in major markets throughout the country looms as CBS and AT&T executives go down to the wire on negotiations for a retransmission consent deal covering 28 O&O stations. The sides have sparred publicly during the past few days as 11 p.m. PT Friday expiration of the previous contract approached. AT&T [...]

  • Contract Placeholder Business WGA ATA Agent

    ICM Responds to WGA Packaging Lawsuit: Claims are 'Baseless' and 'Absurd'

    ICM Partners has asked a judge to dismiss the lawsuit filed against four major talent agencies by the Writers Guild of America as part of the larger war between agencies and the guild over packaging fees on TV series and movies. The guild sued ICM, CAA, WME and UTA in California state court in April, [...]

  • New York City NYC Placeholder

    CityFM Podcast Takes a Deep Look at New York’s Music Scene (Listen)

    First among the many projects listed at the beginning of New York Music Month in June was a WNYE radio show and podcast called CityFM that promised to “explore the city’s music culture, emerging artists and trends, and upcoming events told through the lens of what’s happening around the city in Summer 2019.” And while [...]

  • Live Nation Logo. (PRNewsFoto/Live Nation)

    Live Nation Confirms Placing Tickets Directly on Secondary Market at Artists’ Request

    Representatives for Live Nation, the world’s largest live-entertainment company and owner of Ticketmaster, confirmed that it bypassed conventional channels and directly placed thousands of concert tickets on the secondary market upon artists’ request, in an article published in Billboard. In a statement shared with Variety, the company acknowledged that it has facilitated the transfer of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content