Box Office World: [Lost in the Stars/ 消失的她] China Chased Flash, Transformers, and Spider-Man

The last few months in China have been marked by Hollywood premieres that no one attended. If we add to this the fact that last week was the Dragon Boat Festival in China, it should not be surprising that people hungry for cinema entertainment flocked to the local premieres. As a result, the thriller “Xiao shi de ta” (Lost in the Stars) took the lead at an impressive pace.

“Xiao shi de ta” is based on the 1990 Soviet film “Lovushka dlya odinokogo muzhchiny,” which, in turn, was an adaptation of Robert Thomas’s play. This is the story of a woman who disappeared while on a trip with her husband. The woman mysteriously vanished and is just as mysteriously found when the search is about to be abandoned. However, the husband refuses to recognize her as his wife, believing that she is a stranger impersonating the missing woman.

The film performed exceptionally well in theaters, grossing $74.5 million over the weekend alone. Since its first screenings on Wednesday, “Xiao shi de ta” has already surpassed $100 million (specifically $103.6 million) in total.

Trailer for “Xiao shi de ta”

In the second position, Pixar’s animation “The Elements Between Us” held its ground. The strategy of gradually releasing the film in theaters worldwide paid off, and it saw minimal drop-off compared to its opening week. We estimate its weekend gross at $26.8 million. Among the 17 new markets, Mexico ($4.6 million) and France ($2.7 million) were the top performers. The animation is performing exceptionally well in South Korea, where it has seen strong sales growth and achieved the impossible, surpassing the local box office hit “Bumjoedoshi 3” (The Roundup: No Way Out) to claim the top spot.

Currently, the international earnings for “The Elements Between Us” amount to $55.6 million. Globally, it has reached $121.1 million. There are still premieres ahead for the film, including in the UK, Spain, and Japan.

Only in third place is “Flash,” the previous week’s leader, rapidly descending the box office rankings. Its weekend earnings now stand at just $26.6 million, representing an almost 60% drop from its opening. In total, it has grossed $123.3 million outside the US and $211 million globally. It appears increasingly likely that for Warner Bros., canceling the film, as it did with “Batgirl,” would be more profitable since theatrical receipts will barely cover the marketing costs, and there is still a significant budget to recoup.

Taking the fourth spot in our ranking is Paramount’s “Transformers: Awakening of the Beast.” The film had a strong start in Australia, grossing $2.9 million in five days, but overall performance has been lackluster compared to previous installments. We estimate its weekend earnings at $24 million, bringing the total to just $218.3 million. The film has little chance of coming close to the international success of the previous part, “Bumblebee,” which earned $465.1 million.

In fifth place on our list is “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.” Sony’s animation earned an additional $20.5 million. It debuted in the Far East last week, grossing $3 million in five days in South Korea and $1.5 million in Taiwan.

The second of the Chinese Christmas releases, “Wo Ai Ni!” (Love Never Ends), debuted in sixth place! The love story of an elderly couple grossed $12.5 million over the weekend. However, since the film premiered on Wednesday, its total earnings now stand at $25 million.

Seventh on the list is “The Little Mermaid,” with global earnings just surpassing half a billion dollars. The film grossed $9.4 million over the weekend and performed well in Asia. It remained the number one film in Japan over the weekend and became the best-selling release of 2023 in the Philippines.

The only Hollywood newcomer on the list is the comedy “No Offence,” which earned $9.5 million in its first five days. We estimate its weekend earnings at $7.3 million, a result that is 17% higher than that of “Cocaine bear” in the same 48 countries. The best openings for this Jennifer Lawrence comedy were in the UK ($1.5 million), Australia ($1.3 million), and Germany ($1.1 million).

Closing our list this week is the action spectacle “Fast and Furious 10.” The film grossed $5.3 million over the weekend, keeping its chances alive to reach over $700 million globally.

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