‘Lighting up the Stars’ Expands Lead at China Box Office With $44 Million Second Weekend

·2 min read

Sentimental local drama film “Lighting Up the Stars” topped the mainland China cinema box office for a second weekend. Its haul was nearly 40% bigger than in its debut session.

The film grossed RMB296 million ($44 million) between Friday and Sunday, according to data from consultancy Artisan Gateway, far ahead of second placed “Jurassic World: Dominion” which took RMB65.2 million ($9.7 million). After four weeks in Chinese cinemas “Jurassic World” has accumulated an impressive 4132 million.

More from Variety

“Lighting up the Stars” tells the tale of an ex-con funeral director who has a chance meeting with an orphaned girl. The encounter changes both of their lives. Produced by Lian Ray Pictures, it is directed by Liu Jiangjiang and stars Zhu Yilong as the man and Yang Enyou as the girl.

In its opening weekend, it earned $31.8 million (RMB213 million). After ten days in cinemas (plus previews) it has a cumulative of RMB795 million ($119 million).

“Ode to the Spring” debuted in third place with a modest RMB17.8 million ($2.7 million) take. The film is a drama about ordinary people in Wuhan caught up by the beginnings of the COVID-19 crisis. It boasts a collection of directors – Zhou Nan, Zhang Chi, Tian Yusheng, Dong Yue, and Rao Xiaozhi – and an ensemble cast led by Zhou Dongyu, Yin Fang and Huang Xiaoming.

Chinese youth drama “One Week Friends” managed $1.2 million in its third weekend, giving it a cumulative of $16 million. In fifth place was Japanese animation “Doraemon: Nobita’s Little Star Wars 2021,” which took RMB5.3 million ($800,000) over the weekend and edged its cumulative to RMB90.1 million ($13.4 million) since release on May 28, 2022.

The nationwide aggregate box office was $60.9 million over the weekend, up from $50.4 million in the previous frame. That gives a running total for the year to date of $2.63 million, still more than 36% behind the same point in 2021.

The gain partly reflected the improvements in the COVID situation in Beijing and Shanghai in recent days. But over the weekend, new case numbers flared again, notably in Anhui province, making predictions difficult.

Best of Variety

Sign up for Variety’s Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Click here to read the full article.