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China Box Office: ‘Regiments’ Wins on Patriotic Holiday Weekend

The long holiday weekend failed to boost the overall China box office, though individual films, notably “The Hundred Regiments Offensive,” got a lift.

With Thursday and Friday taken as holidays to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the ending of hostilities with Japan, the top ten films achieved a combined gross of $111 million over the week of Aug 31 – Sept. 6. That compared with $136 million the previous non-holiday week (Aug 24-30).

The nationalistic nature of the holiday may have helped patriotic film “Regiments,” overtake “Terminator Genisys” and rise from second place to take the top spot. The film scored $39.4 million, an increase of 71% on the performance of its first three day opening, according to data from Ent Group. After 10 days it stands on a cumulative score of $62 million.

According to the data, “Regiments” achieved that score with only 99,700 screenings in the week, compared with the 250,000 that “Terminator Genisys” enjoyed. That gave the film a per screen average more than double its nearest competitor. However, in “Regiments” first week there were numerous reports that cinema operators had been given financial incentives by authorities to promote the film.

While the incentives were previously said to be halted on Sept. 3, a number of private sector distributors took to social media to voice doubts about the veracity of the “Regiments” figures. In previous examples of box office fraud designed to boost favored patriotic movies, exhibitors have issued tickets to the film being boosted and then hand-written the patron’s chosen movie over the top.

“Terminator” dropped by 54% in the period to gross $26.7 million. After 15 days in theaters it stands on a cumulative total of $112 million.

Chinese suspense film “The Dead End” remained in third place, but improved its score. It grossed $22.4 million in its second week, up 13% on the $19.8 achieved in its first weekend. After 11 days it has amassed $43 million.

Hong Kong director, Johnnie To’s delve into corporate politics “Office” score $6.9 million on its 5 day debut and landed in fourth place.

“Monster Hunt” remained in fifth place and added $4.83 million, pushing its cumulative total to $389 million after 53 days. It now seems certain to overtake “Furious 7” and become the highest grossing film of all time – and all nationalities – at the Chinese box office.

“Go Away Mr Tumor,” was down 66% to $3.45 million in its fourth week. That gave it a 25 day cumulative score of $81.6 million. Hou Hsiao-hsien’s “The Assassin” slipped by 53% in its second week. It earned $3.02 million, for an 11 day cumulative of $9.39 million.

Brazilian new release “Amazonia” earned $1.76 million in 3 days for eighth. Chinese animation “Enchanted Mirror Romance” took $1.67 million in 4 days for ninth. Hong Kong romantic comedy “All You Need Is Love” took $1.46 million in 3 days for tenth.

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