The Hollywood Reporter (THR) released an article today I found very interesting. First of all I’ve been seeing lots of comments about how Avatar was only released again in China to recapture the box office throne, that is false. THR had this to say about the re-release:
James Cameron only found out a few days beforehand that Avatar would be rereleased March 12 in China in a move that pushed his 2009 science-fiction epic back into the highest-grossing-film-of-all-time slot, not adjusted for inflation.
The China Film Board first reached out to Cameron and Disney in March 2020 about the possibility of rereleasing some older films as a way of encouraging theatergoing in a period when new product from both Hollywood and Chinese studios has been scant. Cameron offered Avatar and Titanic, both of which had been produced by Fox and are now owned by Disney.
While I had previously read about the plan to release Avatar last year, it’s very interesting there was almost no advance notice of the film be re-released by even James Cameron himself. It also speaks volumes how Avatar, a film that is over 11 years old, can go to the front of the worlds largest movie market with no promotion and be the countries #1 film it’s first weekend.
“Sure, it’s nice to reclaim the No. 1 spot, but what the rerelease signifies is that a 12-year-old title with no advance notice could open at No. 1 in the marketplace.”
Jon said it best, this bodes very well for the future of the Avatar sequels, and says a lot about the power on the first movie over a decade after it’s release. The movie is amazing in 3D and I’m glad the people of China are getting a chance to see it in all it’s glory once again.
The official numbers in so far is Avatar made 23.9 million from Fri-Mon, with no new numbers being available past Monday. 6.2 million were from IMAX theaters, and all showings were in 3D. I am very excited to see what Avatar can do this coming weekend, and happy to share some information to clear up some misconceptions about it’s return to Chinese theaters.
To read the full article from THR-https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/how-avatar-reclaimed-its-global-box-office-crown
As expected with the Friday China re-release, Avatar has retaken its crown of highest grossing movie of all time. Currently the unofficial box office numbers have Avatar with $2,798,579,794 and Endgame with $2,797,501,328. Avatar is currently projected to make $58 million off this reissue alone and is expected to release to 20,000 3D screens, of which 700 are IMAX. When Avatar first launched in China in 2009 there were only 14 IMAX screens in the entire country.
“I’m honored that ‘Avatar’ is a part of that reemergence of the cinema experience in China. We got to get the rest of the world caught up as well.”
James Cameron may soon get his “Box Office King” moniker back. With Avatar securely in second place on the all time box office list, and just less than 7.4 million dollars behind Avengers: Endgame, it is set to head back to the theaters in China this Friday. We heard similar rumors a year ago when China’s Film Bureau approved the film to be re-released during the pandemic. However that release never happened, but seems as if it’s set to this week. China is attempting to jump start a slow restart to movie theater re-openings and Avatar should be a good way to help get it off the ground. I for one would be happy to see Avatar reclaim it’s throne. The year Avatar released China had only 4,700 movie screens in the country, it now has 75,000. Avatar was wildly successful in China with a fraction of the screens they now enjoy. Depending on a major few things, Chinese New Year, pandemic, and how widely available the re-release is we could see some very modest numbers or some really big numbers.
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Very informative article on Cirque du Soleil’s Toruk-The First Flight. I highly recommend the show if you have not yet seen it. It won’t be around forever so if you get a chance to catch it when it comes near you, pounce on it.