Friday, May 27, 2022

Are cinemas dead? Certainly not in China

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Chinese box office revenue on New Years Day hit a new record as moviegoers flocked to cinemas on the mainland. China’s containment of COVID-19 within its borders has allowed cinemas and other entertainment venues to operate across the country.

China movie ticket sales hit $ 92 million on January 1 according to at the Maoyan ticketing platform. The previous New Year’s earnings record in China was $ 55 million on Jan. 1, 2018, nearly half the amount earned this year.

China reopened its economy earlier than most other countries in the world after successfully quelling the transmission of COVID-19, making it one of the few places in the world where new films can premiere in theaters with in-person audiences and movie studios can rake in box office revenue.

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Open theaters helped China overtake the United States to become the world’s largest movie market last year, despite its box office revenue drop from $ 9.1 billion in 2019 to $ 2.8 billion in 2020, thanks to cinema stops at the start of the pandemic. Total box office revenue for the United States in 2020 was $ 2.1 billion.

Chinese movie The eight hundred, which was released in August, grossed $ 461 million at the global box office, making it the highest grossing film of 2020, according to to the Box Office Mojo ticket tracking website. It is the first Chinese film to reach the top spot at the global box office.

Two national films released on December 31 A small red flower and Warm hug, won the No. 1 and No. 2 places respectively at the Chinese box office for January 1, followed by a Hong Kong film titled Shock wave 2 at n ° 3. The animated film by Disney and Pixar, Soul, came fifth.

Just over a year ago, cinemas in China closed as the coronavirus began to spread. Some started to reopen in late March 2020, but ticket sales were slow, so China’s National Film Bureau reversed the decision a few days later, closing theaters until July 20. Most cinemas have started reopening on this summer date and have remained open ever since.

In the United States, by contrast, most theaters are still closed and blockbuster Hollywood productions like Black Widow and Wonder Woman 1984 postponed their releases from 2020 to 2021 or were created on streaming platforms rather than in theaters to account for theatrical closures.

The takeover of Chinese cinemas in 2020 accelerated the already growing importance from Chinese box office to Hollywood movies.

Produced in the United States Soul, for example, premiered on the Disney + streaming platform for US viewers, but premiered in theaters in 10 countries, including China, where won $ 5.5 million of its $ 7.6 million in opening weekend box office revenue.

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