“War for the Planet of the Apes” swung into China and knocked “Spider-Man: Homecoming” off its perch at the top of the weekend box office. “Apes” won comfortably with a $60 million haul in three days.
The film enjoyed 115,000 screenings per day, or about half the available total nationwide. It took $18.8 million on Friday, $23.6 million on Saturday, and a steady $17.6 million on Sunday, according to data from Ent Group. Midnight screenings and previews accounted for over $1 million. The total included $5 million from 437 IMAX screens.
“Spider-Man,” last week’s chart-topper, tumbled steeply from $70.1 million in its first three days to just $15 million in its second weekend. After 10 days in Chinese cinemas, its cumulative total stands at $105 million.
The relative performance of the two films underlined once again the importance of the Chinese market to the global box office. The China score last week gave “Spider-Man” the global crown; this week “Apes” was the top title in territories outside North America, thanks to its (belated) Middle Kingdom outing.
Although it was rudely dumped and lost all its IMAX venues, “Spider-Man” maintained a decent per screen average, behind only “Apes” and the enduring “Wolf Warriors II.” “Spider-Man” is now the 10th Hollywood film this year to pass the $100 million milestone in China.
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Third place over the weekend was Japanese animated adventure film “Sword Art: Ordinal Scale.” It opened with $6.15 million in three days. Spanish thriller “Contratiempo” opened in fourth with $4.95 million.
“Wolf Warriors II” hung on with $1.19 million in fifth place. That extended its 53-day total to $862 million. “Dunkirk” claimed a further $1.1 million for a 17-day total of $51 million. No other film achieved more than $1 million over the weekend.
Next week more than a dozen films, including Noomi Rapace- and Orlando Bloom-starring “Unlocked” and animation “Thomas and Friends: The Great Race,” will seek theatrical openings in China ahead of the October holiday period. They are likely to fragment the market.