“Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” topped the box office chart in mainland China on its opening weekend, with a $19.4 million start. But the much-discussed arrival of the Marvel movie was weak compared its franchise predecessor. And its debut was not enough to reignite the China box office market.
The film arrived in a fashion that was adequately signalled for marketing purposes. And it opened on a date that was coordinated with the North American and other international debuts. In the context of the Chinese market, the film also had the advantage of landing at a time when the big, Chinese-made, Lunar New Year titles were losing their power.
Data from consultancy firm Artisan Gateway showed “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” earning RMB132 million in local currency terms (or $19.4 million). That is a less than a third of the $68.2 million that the earlier “Ant-Man and the Wasp” earned in China on its opening weekend, in August 2018.
Imax reported that the film earned some $4 million, or 21% of its total China performance on its large-format screens.
“Quantumania” came in ahead of the long-playing “The Wandering Earth 2,” which in second place earned RMB81.1 million ($11.9 million). That fifth week increment lifted “The Wandering Earth 2” to a running total of $565 million, since releasing on Jan. 22.
Zhang Yimou’s “Full River Red” was third over the weekend with a RMB63.3 million ($9.3 million) haul. It remains the biggest film of the year in China, with a cumulative total of $648 million since Jan. 22.
“Boonie Bears: Guardian Code” held on to fourth place over the weekend with a Friday to Sunday haul of $5.7 million, for a cumulative of $206 million.
Children’s animation “Deep Blue Sea” earned $4.8 million for a total of $122 million.
With “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” failing to give the Chinese overall market much of a boost, the weekend’s aggregate nationwide box office fell to $59 million (down from $76 million previously when there were no major new titles). The year-to-date cumulative now stands at $1.98 billion, some 9% ahead of the same point in 2022.