China Box Office on Track for $5 Billion Year

Transformers Age of Extinction - H 2014
Paramount Pictures

Transformers Age of Extinction - H 2014

With big titles still to come, a record year is in the offing in the world’s second-biggest film market

China’s box office has just passed the key 20 billion yuan ($3.26 billion) threshold, a full three months faster than last year, and is already swiftly approaching last year’s $3.55 billion total.

With a raft of major Hollywood and domestic titles still to come this year in the world’s second-biggest film market, box office is on track for $5 billion in full-year 2014, according to M1905, which is the official website of the state broadcaster’s movie channel, CCTV6.

It took 246 days to break through the 20-billion-yuan marker, which is 96 days faster than last year

Still to come is the October National Day holiday, a big cinema-going event, and Guardians of the Galaxy is due to be released on October 10. Jiang Wen's 3D epic Gone With the Bullets, a sequel to the wildly successful Let the Bullets Fly in 2010, is due to open in December.

There were 42 films during the period, which made over $16.3 million (100 million yuan), and they were evenly split between domestic and imported films.

In the top 10, six are domestic films and four are foreign films, but the box office take is around the same because of the strong performance of Transformers: Age of Extinction, which took $301 million.

The biggest-performing domestic movie was Hong Kong director Pou-Soi Cheang's 3D fantasy epic The Monkey King, which took $170 million.

Last year, China became the first international market to exceed $3 billion in box office, according to the MPAA.

Of the top 10 highest-grossing movies last year in China, seven were domestic films.