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MARTIN GROVE'S HOLLYWOOD REPORT -- 3/25/18


 
TOMB RAIDER -- ALICIA VIKANDER

TOMB RAIDER -- ALICIA VIKANDER

PACIFIC RIM UPRISING

PACIFIC RIM UPRISING

MARTIN GROVE'S HOLLYWOOD REPORT FOR 3/25/18:

Now that Washington's launched a trade war with China, Hollywood may need to rethink its strategy of making films designed to perform well in China.

 

If China's response to the tariffs includes a reduction in how many US films can be distributed in China or on how much money US studios can take out of China, Hollywood could be in serious trouble.

 

"PACIFIC RIM UPRISING" (discussed in today's boxoffice comments) and "TOMB RAIDER" (pictured – Alicia Vikander) are examples of how Hollywood hopes to crunch its numbers by appealing to moviegoers in China. "TR," which reportedly cost $90M, opened a week ago in second place to $23.6M domestic. In China, however, it topped the boxoffice with $41.5M.

 

Hollywood's looking to international rather than domestic audiences to make its big budget action franchise reboots and retreads recoup. Last weekend "TR" fell 56% to $10.4M with a domestic cume of just $41.7M. But internationally its done $170M, including $69.4M from China. International ticket sales -- especially, in the Middle Kingdom – are key elements in a Hollywood game plan that could now be facing unexpected problems in China.

 

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MARTIN GROVE'S HOLLYWOOD REPORT FOR 3/25/18:

It was an "UPRISING" weekend at the boxoffice, but not an uplifting one.

 

Ticket sales, per comScore's Paul Dergarabedian, totaled $132M, down 34.1% from $200.4M last year when "BEAUTY AND THE BEAST" did $90.4M in week two. 2018 is now down 2.5% from 2017. A week ago this year was up 2.2%.

 

After five chart topping weeks, "BLACK PANTHER" slid to second with $16.7M and a domestic cume of $630.9M, enabling Universal/ Legendary's "PACIFIC RIM UPRISING" (pictured) to place first with $28M.

 

"PRU's" quiet domestic opening was offset by much stronger international ticket sales of $122.5M. A hefty $65M of that came via Legendary East from China, the market it was designed to work in -- driven by action not dialogue and by the casting of Chinese stars Tian Jing ("KONG: SKULL ISLAND," "THE GREAT WALL") and Jin Zhang ("THE GRANDMASTER," "IP MAN 3").

 

With a production cost of reportedly $155M, "PRU" needs all the help it can get from moviegoers in China. The original "PACIFIC RIM," which reportedly cost $190M, opened July 12, 2013 via WB to $37.3M domestic and $45M in China. It did $101.8M domestic and $309.2M internationally.