Thursday, November 14, 2019

CHINA FILM EXPERT: DEADLINE DEAD WRONG ABOUT LOOPER‘S BOX OFFICE

October 4, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Robert Cain

Robert Cain, a consultant to the entertainment industry on China, has dismissed reports by Nikki Finke’s Deadline.com about the supposedly record Chinese debut of Sony’s Looper last weekend. Finke, citing unnamed sources, originally reported that the film earned $23-25 million over the weekend, topping the $21 million that it earned domestically. If that figure held, she originally reported, it would mark the first time that a film opened bigger in China than in the U.S. On Wednesday, however, she reported that “some theaters mixed up dollars with yuan, making the tally appear much bigger than it actually was.” On his China Film Biz blog, however, Cain commented that it would have been impossible for Looper to become the first film to open with more money in China than in the U.S. because that feat had already been accomplished last April by Titanic 3D. (The latest Men in Black installment also earned more than $25 million in its Chinese debut, he noted.) Moreover, he suggested, it was likely that Deadline and not the theaters had gotten the currencies confused. He noted that his own sources estimated that the film earned about 27 million yuan or around $4.3 million. Cain maintains that it would have been highly unlikely for Looper to have had a big opening in China for several reasons, including the fact that China only gave the distributors a go-ahead at the last minute. “Many of Looper‘s prints didn’t make it to theaters in time,” he said. The past weekend, he noted, also marked the beginning of National Day Golden Week, when the Chinese spend much of their time traveling and have little time to take in movies. And finally, he said, the film would have faced competition from four new Chinese movies featuring major stars. Because of the holiday, Cain observed, it will probably be several more days before official box office figures for the weekend are released.