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After 60 years in the movie business, Jackie Chan is still a box office force. The Hong Kong action legend added another chapter to his storied career over the weekend as his latest action feature, Ride On, fended off competition from Japanese anime hit Suzume and Universal Pictures’ The Super Mario Bros. Movie to win the weekend in China.
Directed by Larry Yang and produced by Alibaba Pictures, Ride On stars Chan as a washed-up stuntman battling debt collectors over ownership of his stunt horse. The film opened to $11.7 million, topping Suzume’s $8 million performance and Super Mario’s muted $6.3 showing, according to data from Artisan Gateway. Ride On, which also stars Liu Haocun, Kevin Guo and Wu Jing, is on pace for a $30 million-plus career run.
The Super Mario Bros. Movie smashed expectations and set a number of box office records in North America and several other international markets during the long Easter holiday weekend. But in China, where U.S. films have been struggling this year, the movie has commercially disappointed even though it earned rave social scores (9.4 on Maoyan and 9.5 on Taopiaopiao). Universal set the film up well with a launch Wednesday, April 5, China’s Qingming Festival national holiday. But the movie was handily beaten by a pair of holdovers: Suzume earned $7.6 million, and Chinese family drama Hachiko took
$5.4 million, while Super Mario made just $4.7 million. Mario’s modest haul amounted to the biggest opening day for a Hollywood animation title since the start of the pandemic and the second-biggest single day for a U.S. studio film in 2023 — but that’s not saying much given how poorly Hollywood films have fared in China lately.
In North America, Super Mario earned $204.6 million over the five-day weekend. Not long ago, during the years prior to the pandemic, strong, IP-driven Hollywood tentpoles would often earn as much or more in China as they did at home in the U.S. Chinese ticketing app Maoyan currently projects Super Mario to finish its run in China at $17.5 million (although the film’s social scores could help it manage a somewhat stronger hold).
Japanese anime maestro Makoto Shinkai’s Suzume, meanwhile, continued its sensational China run, earning $8 million during its third weekend and sailing to $102.6 million overall. The film is likely to earn upward of $110 million, setting a new all-time high-water mark for Japanese animation in China.
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