For the first time ever in February, China came in ahead of the U.S. at the box office. While “50 Shades of Gray” helped the U.S. see $640 million in box-office revenue, the Chinese New Year festivities (a big movie-going season) delivered a record-breaking $650 million month.
All of the top five movies (which together brought in a combined $371 million in box-office revenue in China in February, according to research firm EntGroup) were homegrown films. The biggest Hollywood movies in China during the month was “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” which brought in $36 million, followed closely behind by “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1,” at $35.5 million.
These movies helped push China to the top in February:
From Vegas to Macau II
Plot via Golden Screen Cinemas: “After foiling the criminal plans of the international money-laundering syndicate DOA, our hero from Macau, Ken (Chow Yun Fat) is ready to sit back and enjoy life. Ken’s plan for a calm existence comes to a halt when his protégé, Vincent (Shawn Yue) join Interpol and asks for his master’s help in arresting the real mastermind of DOA, Ms. Aoi.”
Plot via Wikipedia: “Dragon Blade is a historical action film written and directed by Daniel Lee and starring Jackie Chan. In the film, Chan plays Huo An, the commander of the Protection Squad of the Western Regions during the Han Dynasty. [He is] tasked by the emperor to maintain stability between the warring 36 nations in the Silk Road region.”
The film also stars John Cusack and Adrien Brody, and Hollywood Reporter notes the film took 32.6 percent of total income on Lunar New Year’s Day — one of the biggest movie-going days in China.
Plot via IMDb: “In 1967, a young Beijing student, Chen Zhen, is sent to live among the nomadic herdsmen of Inner Mongolia. Caught between the advance of civilization from the south and the nomads’ traditional enemies – the marauding wolves – to the north; humans and animals, residents and invaders alike, struggle to find their true place in the world.”
Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal
Plot via IMDb: “Legendary Chinese anti-hero Zhong Kui, a young man endowed with mysterious powers who is forced into a battle among the realms of Heaven, Earth and Hell in the course of his attempt to save his countrymen and the woman he loves.”
Somewhere Only We Know
Plot via Fandango: “When a young Chinese girl comes to study in Prague, she finds her grandmother lived there in the past; she decides to trace her grandmother’s path, discovering a new sense of self in the process as well as love in a beautiful man.”
The Chinese New Year was celebrated between Feb. 18 and Feb. 24, a week that brought in $270 million alone — almost 42 percent of the whole month’s box-office revenues — according to data site 58921.com.
The previous record for China’s box offices was $580 million in July 2014, much of which was due to the release of “Transformers: Age of Extinction,” according to data analyzed by Beijing-based research firm EntGroup.