China Box Office: 'Go Away Mr. Tumor' Overtakes 'Monster Hunt'
The tale of a dying cartoonist topples China's most successful film in the world's second biggest film market.
Romantic comedy Go Away Mr. Tumor finally ended the reign of Monster Hunt at the top of China's box office charts last week, taking $29.75 million in its opening weekend.
Go Away Mr. Tumor, produced by Wanda Pictures, tells the real-life story of popular Chinese cartoonist Xiang Yao, whose nom de plume was Bearton or Xiong Dun. She died in November 2012 of a brain tumor at the age of 30.
Once advance ticket sales were factored in, Go Away Mr. Tumor registered a cume of $31.52 million, with 182,066 showings and 5.46 million admissions in four days, according to data from the research group Entgroup.
The movie is directed by Han Yan and again stars Bai Baihe, who is emerging as the box-office queen of the summer, and Daniel Wu. Most of Xiang's comic books focused on teenage love, losing weight, life as a single woman, and her idol, Michael Jackson. She chronicled her darkest hours toward the end in her books.
Monster Hunt took another $25.82 million for a cume of $356.27 million after 32 days. The CGI/live-action fantasy epic is the first Chinese movie ever to earn more than two billion yuan ($312 million) at the box office.
Hong Kong director Raman Hui's Monster Hunt is the second highest grossing movie of all time in China. The movie had 193,618 showings and 4.42 million admissions in the week to Aug. 16.
Yet again, Chinese films accounted for all of the top movies last week, with the large number of admissions boosted by the ongoing school and college vacations. The annual blackout on Hollywood tentpoles until at least mid-August will also have helped.
In third place came Dante Lam's sports comedy To the Fore, starring Eddie Peng, Shawn Dou, Choi Su-won and Wang Luodan, which took $8.86 million for a cume of $20.57 million after 11 days, with 124,866 showings and 1.71 million admissions.
Behind that was the animated film Monkey King: Hero Is Back, still riding high, which added $7.64 million for a 38-day gross of $145.23 million. The latest take on the Monkey King legend had 1.42 million admissions.
In fifth place was Pancake Man (Jian Bing Man), which added $6.38 million for a gross of $183.72 million after 31 days on release. The superhero parody film features Jean-Claude Van Damme as a villain and is written and directed by and stars Da Peng.
Pancake Man had 71,051 showings, while admissions were 1.19 million. It is the second Chinese movie to pass the one billion yuan ($146 million) threshold this year, and at a cost of just $2.9 million to make, is one of the most profitable Chinese films ever.
Another children's toon, Roco Kingdom 4, was in sixth place, taking $5.68 million in its opening weekend, followed by Detective Gui, which bowed with $4.97 million.
In eighth place came the animation Mr. Black: Green Star, which added $3.07 million in its first full week for a gross of $9.29 million.
The animated comedy Kwai Boo was in ninth place, adding $2.99 million for a cume of $9.11 million, while the romantic action comedy Wild City rounded out the top 10, adding $1.84 million for a cume of $23.66 million.