Mainland China’s box office has soared to unprecedented heights during the current summer season, setting a new record. the ticketing agency Maoyan Entertainment, which defines the summer period as spanning from June to August, is reporting this year’s summer box office surpassed the CNY ¥17.8 billion (USD $2.44 billion) established in 2018, and is currently sitting at CNY ¥18.2 billion (USD $2.5 billion) with two weeks left to go.
What’s more, it was hit Chinese productions in a mix of genres that led to the box office bonanza rather than blockbuster Hollywood titles. Notable hits include “Lost in the Stars” (mystery drama), “No More Bets” (crime-action), “Creation of the Gods I: Kingdom of Storms” (historical fantasy), “One and Only” (youth dance-drama), “Chang An” (animation), and “Never Say Never” (uplifting martial arts drama). The “Meg 2: The Trench,” though an English-language action adventure, is a Chinese co-production.
Even without the usual summer blackout period in China, which has historically restricted the release of imported films during the period, Hollywood titles didn’t perform as expected in the Chinese market. Some of the biggest studio releases were “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts” (USD $97 million), “Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part 1” (USD $51 million) and “Barbie” (USD $36 million).
Artisan Gateway revealed that China’s year-to-date box office total has reached $5.51 billion, an impressive 72% surge compared to the same point last year and only a 6% decline from the equivalent period in 2019.