China Box Office: Despite Censoring Scenes Before Airing, ‘Alien: Covenant’ Scares Up $30M Debut


Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant opened at the top of the Chinese box office over the weekend with $30 million.  The 20th Century Fox film earned $10.2 million on Friday, followed by just under $11 million on Saturday and $7.5 million on Sunday, according to data from Beijing box-office monitor Ent Group (the company’s weekend estimate was slightly lower than Fox’s at $29.1 million). The movie has brought in $215 million worldwide as of Sunday.


Prometheus, the preceding film in the Alien prequel franchise, opened on a Sunday in 2012, taking $4.4 million on its first day and $19.7 million over its first full week.


Local word of mouth around Covenant was fair to middling (average scores of 7.4/10 on reviews site Douban, and 6.8/10 on ticketing platform Weying), but some horror fans took to the social media to complain about the six minutes of cuts imposed by Chinese censors, who excised much of the film’s scariest alien moments.


Universal’s The Mummy, starring Tom Cruise, slipped to second place with $11.1 million, a 79 percent slide from its $53 million opening frame. After 10 days in China, the film has earned $81.7 million, notably better than its underwhelming $56.6 million total in North America. Globally, the film has taken in $295.6 million.


Warner Bros. global sensation Wonder Woman added $6.21 million in its third outing, lifting its China total to $83.3 million. Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, meanwhile, took $3.46 million in its fourth frame, bringing its cumulative to $170.1 million over 24 days.


And India’s Dangal continued its historic run in China, coming in with $3.2 million and a 45-day total of $185.3 million.


The China market is now ready for the much-anticipated release of Paramount’s Transformers 5 on Friday.

Written By: Tommy Lightfoot Garrett
Photographs are Courtesy: Twentieth Century Fox Studios
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