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By Jonathan Papish (@ChinaBoxOffice) & EntGroup Consulting

Co-stars Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, and director Christopher McQuarrie have been making the rounds in China this past week, stopping in Shanghai for the premiere of Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation and meeting Alibaba’s CEO Jack Ma, one of the richest men in China as well as the man behind Rogue Nation’s probable $200M+ run in the Middle Kingdom. Ma’s newly formed Alibaba Pictures not only invested an undisclosed sum in the fifth franchise of the popular Mission: Impossible franchise, but also partnered with Paramount Pictures to throw the full force of Alibaba’s horizontal and vertical integration behind the film through marketing, online ticketing, and merchandising.

 

Taobao Movie, an app offering online ticket sales and seat selection owned and operated by Alibaba, began selling Rogue Nation tickets nearly one month ago and sold ¥1 million ($157K) worth of tickets in just one hour. Taobao Movie ran another promotion a week ago and sold 200,000 additional tickets. Alibaba also helped Paramount connect with 30 merchants and manufacturers to produce Mission: Impossible related merchandise and is using its online marketplace to sell the products. A quick look on Taobao’s Kickstarter-esque crowdfunding site shows products ranging from Mission: Impossible inspired roller blades to a wifi-enabled robotic vacuum cleaner easily reaching their funding goals.

 

As of this writing, Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation has earned an estimated $18.5 million on Tuesday, making it the second biggest opening day for a 2D film behind this summer’s local hit Jianbing Man. Rogue Nation premiered on more than half of China’s 26,000 screens and accounted for 90% of Tuesday’s box office total. Despite several local films also opening this week, Rogue Nation has the highest levels of awareness, intent to purchase, and word of mouth of any new release according to EntGroup’s EFMT Index. We believe it will have a long and healthy run thanks to Alibaba Pictures’ push and significantly outgross Ghost Protocol’s $106 million. Universal’s global behemoth Minions opens up next Sunday, but we believe both movies can co-exist in the Chinese marketplace. Additional details on Minions will be provided in next week’s preview.

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Jonathan Papish @ChinaBoxOffice

 

Terminator: Genisys earned $11.5 million (-51%) from 7 markets this weekend, the lion’s share again coming from China which grossed $11.4 million and earned its 3rd straight weekend victory. Genisys has made $109 million on the Mainland, which is nearly one-third of its $346.3 million overseas cume and exactly one-quarter of the $435.92 million worldwide total. Genisys will end its China run with $120 million as Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation opens on Tuesday and will steal most of Arnold’s screens. 

 

Hitman: Agent 47 brought in $11.37 million from 71 total territories. The action film has grossed $43.2 million overseas and $62.9 million globally. Russia and Venezuela both had solid openings with Russia taking the top spot with $2.4 million and Venezuela in second behind Fantastic Four with $1.16 million. However, India opened to $321K on 238 screens and South Korea bowed to just $301K on 271 screens. 

 

Minions pulled in $10.9 million (-27%) from 57 territories this weekend, and has now grossed $714.2 million overseas and $1.044 billion worldwide. The animated spinoff film from Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainments opened in Turkey with $866K which was the second-biggest opening for an animated film in Turkey, just 12% below Ice Age: Continental Drift. There are two more territories to release: China next Sunday and Greece on September 24.

 

Ant-Man finally burrowed into South Korea this weekend earning the highest opening for a Marvel Cinematic Universe first installment with $9.2 million since releasing on Thursday. Paul Rudd’s diminutive superhero grossed $10 million from 35 total territories, lifting the overseas total to $210.5 million and the global total to $383.69 million. Ant-Man flies into Japan on September 19.

 

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation grossed $9.4 million (-39%) from 64 overseas territories this frame, bringing the international cume to $328.7 million and the worldwide total to $511.187 million. Top holdovers include France ($1.4M/$18.4M cume), Japan ($1.3M/$36.1M cume), Germany ($980K/$12.4M cume), UK/Ireland ($820K/$31.2M cume), and Brazil ($700K/$8.8M cume). 

 

Rogue Nation opens in its final territory China on Tuesday. The film had its premiere in Shanghai on Saturday with Tom Cruise, co-star Rebecca Ferguson and director Christopher McQuarrie in attendance. Cruise also met with Alibaba CEO Jack Ma whose Alibaba Pictures co-financed Rogue Nation. The film should be on the same level as this summer’s blockbusters Avengers: Age of Ultron and Jurassic World and early predictions are saying $200M+ is possible. 

 

Crime drama The Dead End earned $9.25 million (-40%) in its second weekend of release in China. The film which earned joint Best Actor awards for its three leading men at the Shanghai International Film Festival has earned $41.85 million and is attracting a sizable female audience. 

 

Straight Outta Compton grossed $7.9 million (+21%) from 13 territories this weekend, raising the early overseas total to $18.1 million and the worldwide total to $168.3 million. The NWA biopic opened at #1 in Austrlia with $3.3 million, New Zealand with $369K, and the Netherlands with $405K. The film held well in UK/Ireland ($2.1M/$8.8M cume) and Germany ($1.3M/$3.7M cume). Next weekend, Compton comes to Sweden, French-Switzerland and South Korea.

 

Inside Out posted $7.1 million (-35%) from 36 territories in its 12th frame of overseas release. The Disney/Pixar original has grossed $386.2 million overseas and $734.419 million worldwide, and is now the 4th highest grossing Pixar film of all-time worldwide, passing Up’s $734.0 million. Greece opened this weekend with the highest opening day ever for a Pixar film (concrete numbers weren’t available). Top markets are UK/Ireland ($55.6M), South Korea ($32.8M), Japan ($31.8M), Mexico ($31.1M), France ($27.7M), Australia ($23.2M), Spain ($22.4M), Argentina ($19.6M), Russia ($19.2M), and Brazil ($14.2M). Inside Out opens September 16 in Italy and October 1 in Germany. There is still no confirmed China release date.

 

The Man From U.N.C.L.E. grossed $6.2 million (+11%) this weekend overseas for $46.0 million total and $84.4 million worldwide. Warner Bros’ big screen adaptation of the 1960s TV show opened in 18 new territories this weekend including Mexico ($1.0M from 865 screens), Italy ($598K on 308 screens), Brazil ($526K from 434 screens), and Singapore ($497K on just 41 screens). U.N.C.L.E. infiltrates France on September 16 and Japan on November 14.

 

Japanese audiences seem to be buying Ted 2’s schtick, giving the foulmouthed teddy $2.4 million for a $10.7 million 9-day total. The Universal sequel earned $4.7 million (-50%) from 45 territories this frame, lifting the overseas total to $120 million and the worldwide gross to $201.3 million. Indonesia will be the film’s final release on Wednesday.

 

Vacation drove off with $4.3 million (-36%) from 55 overseas territories this frame, bringing the international cume to $34.1 million and the worldwide haul to $90.75 million. Russia took 2nd in the market behind Hitman: Agent 47 with $914K on 1,069 screens and has grossed $3.4 million after two weekends of release. Vacation will open in Brazil on Thursday. 

 

Fantastic Four grossed $3.5 million (-49%) from 49 total markets this weekend, lifting its international cume past the century mark to $101.1 million and its worldwide total to $155.6 million. The global flop from 20th Century Fox opens has two more territories to release — Japan and Italy over the next two months.

 

This weekend Jurassic World became just the fourth film ever to cross $1 billion at the international box office. Thanks to a $2.7 million (-31%) weekend from 29 territories including $2.3 million from Japan, Jurassic has now earned $1.003 billion overseas and $1.65053 billion worldwide. Universal Pictures also became the first studio ever to cross $6 billion worldwide in one year.

 

Paper Towns found $2.2 million (+16%) this weekend including an excellent $1.5 million second-place opening in Italy from 340 screens. The film has now opened in all its overseas territories and has grossed $50.4 million at the international box office and $81.9 million worldwide. 

 

Films grossing less than $2 million overseas this weekend + local language films (Weekend Total/Overseas Total/ Global Total)

Veteran (South Korea) - $4.07M/$78.15M/$78.15M

Capture The Flag (Spain) - $1.6M/$5.0M/$5.0M

El Clan (Argentina) - $1.47M/$13.74M/$13.74M

Office (South Korea) - $1.4M/$1.77M/$1.77M

The Beauty Inside (South Korea) - $1.38M/$11.8M/$11.8M

Trainwreck - $1.2M/$26.1M/$133.6M

The 33 (Chile) - $1.28M/$8.68M/$8.68M

Assassination (South Korea) - $1.01M/$81.3M/$82.9M

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Monday Update: Sony's War Room moved into first place over Labor Day weekend with an estimated four-day holiday gross of $12.55 million. The low-budget Kendrick Brothers produced faith based film from TriStar and AFFIRM Films was up one spot and 11 percent from last weekend's three-day start. In addition to the holiday frame, War Room also benefited from strong word of mouth and from expanding into an additional 391 locations this weekend. War Room has grossed a stronger than expected $27.86 million through eleven days of release. That places the film an impressive 66 percent ahead of the $16.75 million eleven-day take of 2011's Courageous. War Room grossed an estimated $9.45 million over the three-day frame.

After leading the box office each of the past three weekends, Straight Outta Compton fell to second this weekend with an estimated $11.06 million four-day take. The successful F. Gary Gray directed N.W.A biopic from Universal was down 16 percent from last weekend and trailed War Room by $1.49 million over the four-day frame. While it remains fairly front-loaded, Straight Outta Compton continues to impress in a big way with a 25-day take of $149.996 million. Straight Outta Compton is running 42 percent ahead of the $105.87 million 25-day gross of last year's Ride Along. The estimated three-day gross for Straight Outta Compton is $8.65 million.

Broad Green Pictures' A Walk in the Woods was off to a nice third place start with an estimated four-day take of $10.35 million. The Robert Redford led comedy adventure exceeded its modest expectations and had a noteworthy performance as Broad Green's first wide release. Since opening on Wednesday A Walk in the Woods has grossed $12.25 million in six days. Lower profile films aimed at adult audiences have a history of over-performing over Labor Day weekend and A Walk in the Woods certainly continued that trend this weekend. A Walk in the Woods is running 17 percent behind the $14.75 million six-day Labor Day launch of 2011's The Debt. The estimated three-day gross for A Walk in the Woods is $8.25 million. The film received a solid B rating on CinemaScore.

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation claimed fourth place with an estimated $9.30 million over the four-day frame. The fifth installment of the Tom Cruise led blockbuster franchise from Paramount held up very nicely as it was up 14 percent from last weekend. Thanks in part to strong holding power throughout its run, Rogue Nation has grossed a very healthy $182.54 million in 39 days. That places the film 9 percent ahead of the $168.10 million 39-day gross of 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation took in an estimated $7.18 million over the three-day weekend.

EuropaCorp Films' The Transporter Refueled followed closely behind in fifth with an estimated $9.00 million. The fourth installment of the action thriller franchise opened towards the lower end of its modest expectations. As was the case for Broad Green's A Walk in the Woods, The Transporter Refueled represented the first wide release for new distributor EuropaCorp Films. The film opened just below the recent $9.12 million four-day start of Hitman: Agent 47 and 55 percent below the $20.10 million four-day debut of 2005's Transporter 2. The Transporter Refueled is likely to be front-loaded going forward, especially given its modest B- rating on CinemaScore and its current Flixster audience score of just 35 percent. The estimated three-day take for The Transporter Refueled is $7.23 million.

The Weinstein Company's No Escape placed in sixth with an estimated $7.03 million. The action thriller starring Owen Wilson, Pierce Brosnan and Lake Bell was down a very solid 13 percent from last weekend. No Escape has grossed $20.03 million through thirteen days, which places it 9 percent ahead of the $18.37 million thirteen-day take of last year's The November Man. No Escape grossed an estimated $5.45 million over the three-day frame.

Upon receiving a major re-expansion this weekend, Inside Out finished in seventh place over the four-day frame with an estimated $4.54 million. The 3D computer animated blockbuster from Disney and Pixar is now on the verge of reaching the $350 million domestic mark with a total gross of $349.62 million to date. Inside Out took in an estimated $3.23 million over the three-day weekend.

Meanwhile, Un Gallo con muchos Huevos debuted in ninth place over the four-day frame with an estimated $4.42 million. The Spanish-language computer animated film from Lionsgate and Pantelion claimed a strong per-location average of $11,190 from 395 locations. Un Gallo con muchos Huevos opened 31.5 percent ahead of the $3.36 million four-day Labor Day weekend start of Cantinflas last year. The estimated three-day gross for Un Gallo con muchos Huevos is $3.42 million.

Sunday Update: Sony's War Room moved into first place over the three-day portion of the Labor Day holiday weekend with an estimated $9.35 million. The low-budget Kendrick Brothers produced faith based film from TriStar and AFFIRM Films was up one spot and down just 18 percent from last weekend. In addition to the holiday frame, War Room also benefited from strong word of mouth and from expanding into an additional 391 locations this weekend. War Room has grossed a stronger than expected $24.66 million through ten days of release. That places the film an impressive 53 percent ahead of the $16.16 million ten-day take of 2011's Courageous. The current four-day estimate for War Room stands at $12.3 million.

After leading the box office each of the past three weekends, Straight Outta Compton fell to second this weekend with an estimated $8.85 million three-day take. The successful F. Gary Gray directed N.W.A biopic from Universal was down 33 percent from last weekend and trailed War Room by a slim $495,000 over the three-day frame. While it remains fairly front-loaded, Straight Outta Compton continues to impress in a big way with a 24-day take of $147.79 million. Straight Outta Compton is running 40 percent ahead of the $105.31 million 24-day gross of last year's Ride Along. The current four-day estimate for Straight Outta Compton is $11.23 million.

Broad Green Pictures' A Walk in the Woods was off to a nice third place start with an estimated $8.17 million. The Robert Redford led comedy exceeded its modest expectations and had a noteworthy performance as Broad Green's first wide release. Since opening on Wednesday A Walk in the Woods has grossed $10.07 million in five days. Lower profile films aimed at adult audiences have a history of over-performing over Labor Day weekend and A Walk in the Woods certainly continued that trend this weekend. A Walk in the Woods is running 15 percent behind the $11.81 million five-day Labor Day launch of 2011's The Debt. The four-day weekend estimate for A Walk in the Woods is $10.27 million. The film received a solid B rating on CinemaScore.

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation claimed fourth place with an estimated $7.15 million. The fifth installment of the Tom Cruise led blockbuster franchise from Paramount held up very nicely as it was down just 12 percent from last weekend. Thanks in part to strong holding power throughout its run, Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation has grossed a very healthy $180.39 million in 38 days. That places the film 7.5 percent ahead of the $167.85 million 38-day gross of 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

EuropaCorp Films' The Transporter Refueled followed closely behind in fifth with an estimated $7.13 million. The fourth installment of the action thriller franchise opened towards the lower end of its modest expectations. As was the case for Broad Green's A Walk in the Woods, The Transporter Refueled represented the first wide release for new distributor EuropaCorp Films. The film opened 14 percent below the recent $8.33 million debut of Hitman: Agent 47 and 57 percent below the $16.54 million opening of 2005's Transporter 2. The Transporter Refueled is likely to be front-loaded going forward, especially given its modest B- rating on CinemaScore and its current Flixster audience score of just 34 percent. The current four-day estimate is $8.7 million for The Transporter Refueled.

The Weinstein Company's No Escape placed in sixth with an estimated $5.45 million. The action thriller starring Owen Wilson, Pierce Brosnan and Lake Bell was down a solid 33 percent from last weekend. No Escape has grossed $18.45 million through twelve days, which places it 3 percent ahead of the $17.98 million twelve-day take of last year's The November Man. BoxOffice is currently projecting a four-day weekend gross of $7.0 million for No Escape.

Meanwhile, Un Gallo con muchos Huevos debuted in eighth place over the three-day frame with an estimated $3.40 million. The Spanish-language computer animated film from Lionsgate and Pantelion claimed a healthy per-location average of $8,608 from 395 locations. Un Gallo con muchos Huevos opened 28 percent ahead of the $2.66 million three-day Labor Day weekend start of Cantinflas last year. The current four-day estimate for Un Gallo con muchos Huevos stands at $4.4 million.

Saturday Update: The Transporter Refueled debuted in first place on Friday, but only by a hair. The fourth film in the action franchise took in $2.4 million yesterday, 23 percent less than Hitman: Agent 47 last week and 57 percent behind The Transporter 2's opening day ahead of Labor Day weekend in 2005. Word of mouth is sour so far with just a 34 percent Flixster score this morning, and an even lower 18 percent score from Rotten Tomatoes critics. BoxOffice is projecting a three-day opening of $6.5 million and a four-day holiday frame of $7.8 million.

War Room claimed second place to begin its sophomore frame with an estimated $2.325 million on Friday, down just 43 percent from opening day last week. The faith-based film has now totaled $17.64 million, putting it 39 percent ahead of the pace of 2011's Courageous. The pic is currently on pace for a strong three-day frame around $9.3 million and four-day of $11.75 million. Should those numbers hold, War Room would score an impressive first place box office victory for the weekend, although it will certainly be a close race through Monday's Labor Day holiday.

Universal reports that Straight Outta Compton posted another $2.23 million on Friday, off 42 percent from the same day last week. The biopic's total now stands at an excellent $141.2 million domestically. Look for a three-day weekend around $9.0 million and a four-day frame of $11.4 million.

A Walk In the Woods took fourth place yesterday with $2.2 million from 1,960 theaters, giving it a three-day total of $4.1 million since its Wednesday debut. The sleeper success is just 10 percent off the pace of 2011's The Debt and looks to be on track for a three-day weekend of $7.7 million with a four-day frame of $10.5 million. Should those projections hold, the film would tally over $12.5 million for its overall first six days in release.

Filling out the top five yesterday, Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation continued to go about its business with just a 23 percent drop from last Friday to $1.675 million. That brings the hit franchise sequel's domestic total up to $174.9 million to date. BoxOffice projects a $7.5 million three-day weekend and $9.6 million four-day take.

Meanwhile, Un Gallo con Muchos Huevos earned an estimated $870,000 from 395 locations on opening day Friday. The PG-13 animated flick from Pantelion posted a $2,202 per-theater average yesterday, in line with last year's Labor Day weekend opener Cantinflas ($2,115 average) which posted a similar $808,000 first day from 382 theaters. Un Gallo con Muchos Huevos also reportedly earned a strong "A+" CinemaScore. BoxOffice projects a $3.0 million Friday-Sunday frame and $3.7 million for the four-day extended weekend.

Below are our three-day and four-day projections for the top 15 films this weekend:

1. War Room ($9.3 million three-day / $11.75 million four-day)
2. Straight Outta Compton ($9.0 million / $11.4 million)
3. A Walk In the Woods ($7.7 million / $10.5 million)
4. Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation ($7.5 million / $9.6 million)
5. The Transporter Refueled ($6.5 million / $7.8 million)
6. No Escape ($5.0 million / $6.3 million)
7. The Man from U.N.C.L.E. ($3.6 million / $4.5 million)
8. Sinister 2 ($3.2 million / $4.1 million)
9. Inside Out ($3.1 million / $4.3 million)
10. Un Gallo con Muchos Huevos ($3.0 million / $3.7 million)
11. Ant-Man ($2.8 million / $3.76 million)
12. Minions ($2.79 million / $3.8 million)
13. Jurassic World ($2.5 million / $3.4 million)
14. The Gift ($2.3 million / $2.9 million)
15. Hitman: Agent 47 ($1.9 million / $2.45 million

Check BoxOffice on Sunday for updated weekend projections from the studios.

Friday Update #2: According to early reports, Straight Outta Compton will finish in first place over the 4-day weekend with around $11.5 million.

The Transporter Refueled and A Walk in the Woods are running close to each other, with a range of $8 million-$10 million each for the 4-day.

Check back tomorrow for updated projections and official studio numbers.

Friday Update #1: Sources report that The Transporter Refueled grabbed an estimated $365,000 from Thursday night's early shows. By comparison, Hitman: Agent 47 scored $600,000 Thursday earnings two weeks ago, although it's arguable the Transporter sequel could be slightly less front-loaded with summer essentially over for many potential viewers.

More updates for this holiday weekend's tight box office race as they come...

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By Daniel Garris

Straight Outta Compton was up one spot on Thursday to move back into first place with a daily take of $1.006 million. The successful F. Gary Gray directed N.W.A biopic from Universal was down 7 percent from Wednesday and down 48 percent from last Thursday. Straight Outta Compton was the week's top film with a weekly haul of $18.05 million. That was down 50 percent from the previous frame and brings the film's three-week total to a strong $138.94 million. Straight Outta Compton is running 45 percent ahead of the $95.72 million three-week gross of last year's Ride Along.

Sony's War Room was up one spot and 7 percent over Wednesday to take second with $0.917 million. The low-budget Kendrick Brothers produced faith based film from TriStar and AFFIRM Films claimed a healthy daily per-location average of $808 from a modest 1,135 locations. War Room outpaced expectations this week with a second place seven-day start of $15.31 million. The film is performing an impressive 36 percent stronger than the $11.29 million seven-day start of 2011's Courageous. War Room will be playing in 1,526 locations this weekend.

Broad Green Pictures' A Walk in the Woods placed in third with an estimated $0.863 million. The Robert Redford led comedy fell two spots and 26 percent from Wednesday's opening day performance. A Walk in the Woods is off to a very promising start so far with $2.03 million in two days. That places the film 7 percent ahead of the $1.90 million two-day pre-Labor Day midweek start of The Debt back in 2011. At its current pace, A Walk in the Woods will likely find itself in a close three-way race for first place over the holiday weekend with Straight Outta Compton and War Room.

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation held steady in fourth place with $0.691 million. The fifth installment of the Tom Cruise led blockbuster franchise from Paramount was down a slim 1 percent from Wednesday and down 32.5 percent from last Thursday. Rogue Nation placed in third for the week with $11.15 million. The film was down just 30 percent from the previous week and has grossed a very healthy $173.24 million in five weeks.

The Weinstein Company's No Escape rounded out the day's top five with $0.554 million. The action thriller starring Owen Wilson, Pierce Brosnan and Lake Bell fell 8 percent from Wednesday and 37 percent from last Thursday. No Escape placed in fourth for the week with $10.94 million. The film has grossed $13.00 million in nine days, which is in line with expectations and places the film 5 percent behind the $13.67 million nine-day take of last year's The November Man.

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sep3.pngBroad Green Pictures' A Walk In the Woods opened above expectations with $1.17 million in first place on Wednesday, slightly ahead of The Debt's $970,532 opening Wednesday before Labor Day four years ago. Despite middling reviews, the R-rated comedy looks to be attracting some of its target adult audience heading into Labor Day weekend. If it holds up similar to The Debt over the next four days, it could even lead the holiday box office weekend.

Universal reports Straight Outta Compton added $1.08 million on Wednesday, down 48.5 percent from the same day last week. That gives the biopic a domestic total of $137.9 million through 20 days of release.

In third place, War Room tacked on another $0.86 million, giving the faith-based pic a six-day total of $14.4 million. That puts it 79 percent ahead of the pace 2008's Fireproof and 34 percent ahead of 2011's Courageous.

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation eased 37 percent from last Wednesday to $0.69 million yesterday. The Tom Cruise franchise sequel has amassed an excellent $172.55 million domestically to date.

No Escape was off 49 percent from its first day last Wednesday to $0.603 million yesterday. With $12.45 million in the bank through eight days of play, it's pacing 5.5 percent behind The November Man.

Meanwhile, We Are Your Friends tallied $0.157 million yesterday, giving it a weak six-day haul of $2.37 million. Unfortunately, the Zac Efron pic is trailing That Awkward Moment by 78 percent.

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