Theatrical box office in Hong Kong was down by only 4% over the four-day Easter holidays, compared with the same period in 2019, the last pre-COVID year. The score was achieved despite mandatory seating restrictions still in place.
Data published Wednesday by Hong Kong Box Office Limited, showed gross revenues of HK$28.4 million ($3.64 million) between April 2-5, 2021. In 2019 the comparable figure was HK$29.6 million ($3.79 million). The city’s cinemas were closed entirely during Easter last year.
As Hong Kong has been roiled by multiple waves of the virus, cinemas were closed for a total of more than five months. That included the peak periods of Christmas, New Year and Chinese New Year. They reopened in late February, but with seat occupancy limited to 75%.
The four-day chart was headed by “Godzilla vs. Kong” with revenues of HK$9.11 million ($1.17 million) for a cumulative of HK$29.7 million ($3.81 million) ahead of Japanese cartoon “Doraemon: Stand By Me” with HK$7.93 million ($1.02 million) for a cumulative total of HK$11.0 million ($1.41 million).
“Hong Kong audiences have confidence in the epidemic prevention measures in theaters, and their desire to watch in the theater is still strong. It is still unknown when they can resume eating and drinking in the theaters,” the organization said. “There are still instability factors in the theater and the film industry. We hope that people who like movies will (continue) going to the theater to watch.”
The Hong Kong International Film Festival is currently under way in the city, albeit with a smaller-than-usual lineup.
Hong Kong has endured 11,580 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, which caused 205 deaths. On Wednesday, health authorities identified two new local infections and six imported cases.