“Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation” opened Tuesday in China to a massive $18.5 million, one of the best debuts a U.S. film has ever enjoyed in the People’s Republic.
That number ranks as the biggest opening for a U.S. film not in 3D and the fifth-biggest debut in history for a U.S. production. The Paramount and Skydance production stars Tom Cruise in his fifth appearance as superspy Ethan Hunt. It has grossed more than $511 million worldwide since debuting in July.
Paramount has made the Chinese market a major focus for its international division, and the emphasis has paid off. Of the five top openings for Hollywood films, three are Paramount releases. The other two are “Terminator Genisys” ($26.7 million) and “Transformers: Age of Extinction” ($27.4 million). The top two openings for U.S. films belong to “Furious 7” with $54.4 million and “Avengers: Age of Extinction” with $29.2 million.
To help push the film in China, Paramount enlisted Alibaba Pictures group as a co-financier. It also deployed Cruise on a promotional visit to China, where he held press conferences and fan events in Beijing, Chengdu and Shanghai last weekend.
“Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation” enjoyed an opening day that was 116% ahead of “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol’s” first day in China. That’s an impressive feat considering that “Ghost Protocol” on to make more than $100 million in the country.