There were no signs of economic downturn in Chinese cinemas last weekend as popular local director Feng Xiaogang's If You Are The One raked in a record-breaking $11.68m (RMB80m) in four days of release.

The results mark a new opening weekend record for a romantic comedy in China. The opening was also the second highest of the year, behind John Woo's Red Cliff, but higher than Quantum Of Solace, which was the highest-grossing foreign film in China this year.

In July, Red Cliff earned $15.8m (RMB108m) in the first weekend of release, while in November, Quantum Of Solace took in $9.93m (RMB68m) in the first weekend.

If You Are The One also broke the opening weekend of Feng's previous movies. Last year, Feng's successful war drama Assembly grossed $10.22m (RMB70m) in the first weekend. In 2006, Feng's period drama The Banquet earned $8.03m (RMB55m) in the first four days of release.

As of midday of Tuesday, Dec 23, the film had grossed $14.6m (RMB100m), according to producer/distributor Huayi Brothers Pictures.

Starring Ge You and Shu Qi, the film follows a rich middle-aged man's journey to find his Ms. Right. The story is partially inspired by Taiwanese director Chen Kuo-fu's 1998 The Personals, about a woman's attempts to find a husband through personals ads.

If You Are The One was released on Dec 18 with around 700 film prints and some 300 digital screens across the country. The release scale is slightly smaller than that of Chen Kaige's Forever Enthralled, which opened two weeks earlier on around 1,400 screens. However, the first weekend gross of If You Are the One was almost double of that of Forever Enthralled ($6.13m or RMB42.18m).

Cinema owners in Beijing and Shanghai estimate that If You Are the One will easily gross over $29.2m (RMB200m) to become the best-selling comedy so far in Chinese film history. The strong figures have also given cinema owners high hopes for the prospects of upcoming films in January 2009.

John Woo's second Red Cliff movie will be released on Jan 8, according to distributor China Film Group, while Ning Hao's comedy Crazy Racer is scheduled for around Chinese New Year, which is the third weekend of January.