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China box office: 'Chinese Odyssey 3' holds off newcomers

Jeff Lau’s threequel beat off competition from family animation Storks during quiet week.

As Storks and other new releases failed to impress at the Chinese box office, A Chinese Odyssey: Part 3 remained top for another week from Sep 19-25. The latest instalment of the fantasy comedy franchise, already a career high for a Jeff Lau-directed film from its first week, added $12.70m from a 12-day total of $49.07m.

Thanks to strong word-of-mouth, the coming-of-age romance Soulmate climbed two places to number two in its second week, overtaking S Storm and Cock And Bull, posting $10.05m for $20.60m after 12 days.

S Storm and Cock And Bull each dropped a notch to third and fourth position respectively. With $9.98m for a 12-day total of $27.40m, S Storm has become another successful Hong Kong cop thriller this year, after Cold War 2 and Line Walker.

Crime comedy Cock And Bull earned $6.40m for $17.88m after 12 days, but it is unlikely to match the success of director Cao Baoping’s previous film The Dead End, which grossed $46m last year.

Two new animations opened in fifth and sixth. Warner Bros’ Storks was the week’s highest new entry with $5.07 from its three-day opening weekend, which exceeded The Peanuts Movie’s debut by 75% and was on par with Hotel Transylvania. China was the biggest among the 33 international markets that opened day-and-date with its North American debut.

Japanese animation Chibi Maruko-chan: The Boy From Italy launched with $2.78m from its first three days.

Rounding out the weekly top 10 were Star Trek Beyond on $2.45m for $63.49m after 24 days; Nine Lives on $1.86m for $15.70m after 17 days; new release Bastille Day on $1.72m from its first six days; and The Shallows on $1.32m for a 17-day total of $14.30m.

Last week’s box office dropped approximately 46.88%, without a single-day total that reached RMB100m ($15m). The September box office as of yesterday was only approximately 55% of the same period last year.

All eyes are now on the National Day holidays for kick-starting ticket sales. High-profile releases include I Belonged To You (Sep 29), Operation Mekong and L.O.R.D.: Legend Of Ravaging Dynasties (Sep 30) and Mission Milano (Oct 1).

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