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Ant-Man and The Wasp Opens To $68M In China, The Meg Hits $400M Worldwide

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Ant-Man & The Wasp finally opened in China this weekend, premiering to the tune of $68 million – the 4th-highest opening for the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the Middle Kingdom.

$68 million brings the Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly-fronted Ant-Man & The Wasp to a global haul of $544.1 million, and the superhero sequel is still yet to open in Japan and a handful of other territories.  Also in China, Jason Statham vehicle The Meg reigned supreme during the Monday to Thursday midweek box office, only falling to #3 on the charts behind the MCU’s latest and local flick Big Brother (starring Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’s Donnie Yen) come the weekend.

That strong showing midweek brings The Meg’s Chinese total up to $143 million, for a worldwide total of $408.6 million.

Domestically, Crazy Rich Asians stayed on top with a further $25 million gross, for a total cume of $76 million in the US, and $83.9 million worldwide. The feel-good flick broke records in Singapore and Malaysia, where it had the biggest debut for a romantic comedy of all time (the film is set, and partially shot, in Singapore).

Both Ant-Man & The Wasp and The Meg are still in UK cinemas, rated 12A. Crazy Rich Asians has had its UK release brought up, and is now due to bow on Saturday the 1st of September.

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The Grinch Debuts To $78M Worldwide, Venom Dominates China With $111M Opening

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Evidently, early November isn’t too soon to start celebrating Christmas, as The Grinch opened to a domestic cume of $66 million.

Internationally, the animated family comedy pulled in a further $12.7 million, for a global start of $78.7 million. Those numbers may not seem over the top, but they do mark the highest opening for a Christmas film of all time, and given the traditionally long theatrical runs of yuletide flicks, Illumination could be looking at a serious moneymaker in the coming weeks.

Elsewhere, Venom opened incredibly strong in the middle kingdom this weekend, with a frankly ridiculous $111 million debut in China.

Not only is that an absolutely ludicrous figure (more than enough to keep The Grinch off the worldwide top spot), and over the $100 million price tag that the flick cost to make, but it also makes it the second-highest opening for a superhero movie ever in the country – behind only Avengers: Infinity War. The film’s wild over-performance means that Venom has now passed $673.5 million worldwide, and looks set to comfortably eke past the $700 million mark.

Still holding on elsewhere, Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody drew in a further $63.1 million, taking its international score up to a cool $285 million. Also carrying over from last week, Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms managed to rustle together another $13.5 million internationally. The holiday feature was dead on arrival in the US, where it’s scarcely managed to pass $35 million. The costly fantasy adventure carries a $125 million price tag, and has scored just $96.7 million globally.

Next week will see the release of Harry Potter prequel Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, due out on the 16th of November.

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The Grinch Eyeing $60M+ Opening Weekend

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The Grinch, Universal and Illumination’s latest animated feature together, is on track to score between $55 million and $65 million when it opens in the US this weekend.

The family comedy is expected to blow both The Girl In the Spider’s Web and Overlord, the other two newcomers hitting screens alongside it, well out of the water.

An adaptation of the classic Dr. Seuss storybook, from Despicable Me studio Illumination, The Grinch will star Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch as the titular miserable curmudgeon who detests the holiday season. Joining Cumberbatch in the voice cast are Parks and Recreation’s Rashida Jones, SNL’s Kenan Thompson, Beauty and the Beast’s Angela Lansbury, and hip-hop star Pharrell Williams as the narrator.

The Grinch releases in UK cinemas from this Friday, and is rated U.

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Bohemian Rhapsody Rocks Box Office With $122M Global Opening, Nutcracker Flops

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Musical biopic Bohemian Rhapsody had a big opening this weekend. Freddie would be proud.

The Queen feature, which stars Rami Malek (Mr. Robot) as the band’s beloved charismatic lead, took in a staggering $122.5 million in its opening weekend; outperforming domestic expectations to score $50 million in the States alone, making it the second-highest US opening for a musical biopic of all time (behind only 2015’s N.W.A. flick Straight Outta Compton, which garnered $60 million on its release).

Bohemian Rhapsody fended off competition from Disney’s family fantasy The Nutcracker and the Four Realms, which landed with an almighty thud, only pulling in $20 million across the pond – ironic given that Rhapsody will be one of the last 20th Century Fox features to be released prior to the finalisation of the two companies’ merger.

In total, with last week’s early UK release of the film, the Freddie Mercury biopic currently sits at an impressive $141.7 million, on a budget of just $50 million.

The film’s prospects had been shaky for a moment there, as early reviews seemed to have done some harm to the feature’s chances – critics unilaterally praised Malek’s performance (which is already garnering Oscar buzz) but were more lukewarm on the rest of the picture. In a statement to press, Fox’s head of domestic distribution Chris Aronson said: “I’m not surprised there’s a disconnect, but audiences didn’t miss it. That’s the power of word of mouth — and Queen and their music.”

Disney, however, were considerably less candid about Nutcracker’s debut, with the House of Mouse’s president of domestic distribution Cathleen Taff saying: “Obviously, it’s not the start we were looking for, but it’s a great family friendly option. Sometimes it doesn’t connect as broadly as we want it to.”

Bohemian Rhapsody and The Nutcracker and the Four Realms are both in UK cinemas now, rated 12A and PG respectively.

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