'Iron Man 3' Dominates Hong Kong Box Office in First Half of 2013

Marvel Entertainment
Gwyneth Paltrow in "Iron Man 3."

Tony Stark's latest outing easily took the top spot, but the surprise runner-up is Brad Pitt's "World War Z," which secured second place for the year so far within two weeks of opening.

HONG KONG -- Unsurprisingly, Iron Man 3 topped the Hong Kong box office in the first six months of 2013, but the unexpected runner-up is Brad Pitt’s World War Z, which became the second highest grossing film of the first half of the year within two weeks of its release, according to Hong Kong Box Office Ltd, a subsidiary of Hong Kong Motion Pictures Industry Association.

There was no stopping the global blockbuster Iron Man 3, with its mammoth $13.6 million (HK$106 million) take during its two-month run here. IM3 is the third-highest grossing film of all time in Hong Kong, behind only James Cameron’s Avatar and Titanic.

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But the shocker is the still-showing World War Z, which has raked in about $4 million (HK$30.7 million) since its opening on June 20. The Brad Pitt-produced-and-starred zombie fest has overtaken two February releases that catered for audience during the Chinese New Year holiday, A Good Day to Die Hard and Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons -- in third and fourth place -- to become the second highest grossing film. Bruce Willis’s fifth installment of the Die Hard franchise grossed $3.7 million (HK$28.7 million). Journey to the West, the Stephen Chow-directed fantasy epic, took $3.66 million (HK$28.4 million) and was the top grossing Chinese-language film of the year so far, ahead of director Wong Kar-Wai’s The Grandmaster, which, with a $2.74 million (HK$21.3 million) box office take, is the auteur’s highest grossing film in Hong Kong of his career.

For the first six months of the year, the combined box office gross in Hong Kong was $98.65 (HK$765 million), a 1.43 percent increase over the same period in 2012. There were 153 movies released in theaters during this time, but only 19 of them were Chinese-language films.