Sony Pictures’ 2012 has broken the $58.6m (RMB400m) barrier to become the second biggest foreign film ever in mainland China. The film’s China gross accounts for around 10% of its worldwide box office.
The highest-grossing record of a foreign film in China was set by Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen in July 2009, with $62.96m (RMB430m).
Still on release, 2012 is also the second foreign film breaking the RMB400m mark after Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. Throughout Chinese film history, there have only been three films grossing over RMB400m. In addition to Transformers 2 and 2012, state-funded drama The Founding of A Republic also broke the RMB400m mark with $61.49m (RMB420m) earlier this year.
Managers from Shanghai-based United Cinema Line said that the production values of 2012, and the relatively low performance of local films in the same time slot, paved the way for the film’s success. Managers from Huaxia Film Distribution, one of the distributors of the film, told local Chinese media that they expect the film’s gross to surpass the record of Founding of A Republic and reach the record of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.
This weekend 2012 will confront Zhang Yimou’s A Simple Noodle Story, a Chinese remake of Cohen Brothers’ Blood Simple, Pang Brothers’ The Storm Warriors and local star Jay Chou’s The Treasure Hunter.
Meanwhile, James Cameron’s Avatar will be released in China on Jan 1. The local industry estimates that the film may be another to break the $58.56m (RMB400m) mark.