Data from Alibaba’s Beacon data tracking service showed the film lying comfortably on top of the mainland Chinese box office chart with RMB166 million (26.1 million) earned on the third morning of the Lunar New Year holidays. That gave the film a running cumulative of RMB1.271 billion or fractionally more than $200 million, using an exchange rate where one US dollar is worth 6.35 Chinese Yuan (or Renminbi).
The data from Beacon tallies with that of China Box Office’s Ent Group, which showed “Lake Changjin II” earning $100.1 million on its Tuesday opening day, followed by $84.5 million on Wednesday, for an adjusted two-day cumulative of $185 million.
In terms of market share, Beacon reports that “Lake Changjin II” enjoyed 44% of total theatrical revenues on Tuesday and 45% on Wednesday. At midday on Thursday, the figure was 42%.
The Ent Group data showed that that film played 142,000 sessions on Tuesday and that exhibitors expanded that to 156,000 sessions on Wednesday.
Exhibitors in China frequently use dynamic pricing and will increase ticket prices for premium sessions, premieres, weekends and key holidays. The Ent Group data shows that average prices for the Zhang Yimou and Zhang Mo-directed “Snipers” was as high as $14.79 on Wednesday and that seventh-placed Chinese animation “Dunk for Future” enjoyed average ticket prices of $17.79.
In contrast, “Lake Changjin II” ticket prices averaged $9.02 on Tuesday and $9.97 on Wednesday. That its price point on Wednesday was below all other titles in the top ten may reflect the film’s wide availability and the lower ticket prices achieved in the smaller towns and cities (tiers 3 and 4) away from the major metropolises.
IMAX, which operates a huge field of giant screen theaters in China, reported that its venues had booked gross revenues of $7 million across three titles on Tuesday, its second highest Chinese New Year opening day, behind only last year. Of that figure, “Lake Changjin II” accounted for $6.7 million. Two other local titles, “Nice View” and “Only Fools Rush in,” are also currently available in IMAX format.
Beacon’s figures show that the first two days of the Chinese New Year holidays delivered nationwide aggregate gross revenues of RMB2.49 billion ($391 million). Including the business booked on Thursday morning, the holiday season’s running total now stands at $456 million.