China Box Office: 'Fate of the Furious' Overtakes 'Furious 7' to Become Biggest Hollywood Film Ever
No American movie has ever earned more in local currency in the massive Chinese film market.
Universal's The Fate of the Furious is now Hollywood's top-grossing film ever in China.
On Saturday, the latest installment in the locally beloved action franchise clocked in at 2.44 billion yuan (about $350 million) at the Chinese box office, overtaking its predecessor Furious 7, which earned an historic 2.42 billion yuan in 2015.
After its opening on April 14, Fate of the Furious, directed by F. Gary Gray and starring franchise mainstays Vin Diesel and Dwayne Johnson, smashed China's all-time opening-weekend records for an international film with a huge debut of $190 million.
Midway through its third weekend in North America, Fate of the Furious was expected to stay atop the chart with an estimated $18.5 million for a domestic total of $192 million through Sunday. Globally, the film just crossed the $1 billion mark.
Prior to Fate of the Furious' release, many analysts wondered how much of Furious 7's success should be attributed to a "farewell Paul Walker" effect. The franchise favorite died in a violent car crash during a hiatus in shooting in 2013, making the seventh installment the last title in which he would appear. Thus, Fate of the Furious' chances of surpassing its predecessor were considered quite uncertain.
In U.S. currency, Furious 7 still remains slightly ahead. Due to a weaker dollar at the time, the pic's 2.42 billion yuan total was valued at about $390 million in 2015 (today it would be just under $350 million). But Fate of the Furious will continue to add to its local currency record until Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 opens in China on Friday, so it may yet top Furious 7 in unadjusted U.S dollar terms as well.