Local Production Takes Nearly 70% of Mainland’s RMB 5.1 Billion Box Office in First Quarter

25 May 2013 18 h 05 min Comments Off

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(hkfilmart, May 25, 2013) As of March 2013, Chinese Mainland’s box office recorded RMB 5.1 billion in its first quarter. Domestic productions took in a total RMB3.51 billion, accounting for 69% of the overall first quarter box office and putting imports to shame.

China signed an agreement in February last year with the US to exempt an additional 14 US premium-format films, shot in 3D or using the big-screen IMAX format, from its existing annual film import quota of 20, thus allowing a total of 34 US productions to be theatrically released in Mainland every year. China’s film industry has reacted with caution. Some industry players are pessimistic towards the new arrangement. They believe extra foreign imports will put pressure on domestic productions. As a matter of fact, the share of domestic productions declined to a depressing 30% midway last year, giving way to Hollywood blockbusters and making distrustful filmmakers even more distressed.

However, the domestic front bounced back with rounds of pleasant surprises thanks to a series of year-end blockbusters, including “Lost in Thailand” (near RMB 1.3 billion), “Finding Mr. Right” (RMB 550 million), followed by “Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons”, “The Chef, the Actor, the Scoundrel” and “Say Yes”. The triumphant run has lifted the spirit of the Chinese cinema amidst pressing threats from the foreign front.

China is currently the world’s third-largest film producer and second-biggest film market. It is widely speculated that the domestic box office of 2013 will easily surpass RMB 20 billion without getting heavily weighted down by Hollywood imports. Hong Kong film industry players have to note that the abovementioned blockbusters feature an ever-decreasing amount of Hong Kong elements.



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