Week 32 Preview:'Go Away, Monster Hunt!': Inspirational Comedy Set to Rule
Monster Hunt ($334M) and its summer blockbuster counterparts Monkey King: Hero Is Back ($178M) and Jianbing Man ($139M) propelled China’s box office to a new monthly record of $882M in July and a new weekend record of $183M from July 17-July 19. Since that scorching weekend in mid-July, box office receipts have fallen week after week, hitting a two-month low this past frame. Meanwhile, Monster Hunt’s Wuba, the radish-shaped monster destined to be king, has been able to hold onto his crown for four straight weekends with little-to-no competition. This weekend however will see Go Away, Mr Tumor! knock Wuba off his perch and re-energize the summer box office.
The weekend’s biggest release according to EntGroup’s EFMT Index in terms of awareness, intent to purchase and word of mouth, Go Away, Mr Tumor! is based on a series of comic strips written as young, talented illustrator Xiang Yao (pseudonym Xiong Dun) battled non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma from her hospital room. She ended up selling more than a million copies, and her work went on to inspire millions of people with its message of optimism and courage.
Bai Baihe (also starring in Monster Hunt) plays Xiong Dun in the film adaptation of Go Away, Mr. Tumor! and viewers are taken inside the illustrator’s vivid imagination as she battles her illness. Early reactions are very positive calling the film heartbreakingly funny and Ms. Bai’s best performance since her debut in Love Is Not Blind ($56M); it grossed $2M from sold-out Saturday night previews and we expect Go Away, Mr. Tumor! to strike a chord with Mainland filmgoers, earning $150M+ by the end of its run.
China Lion will be releasing Go Away, Mr. Tumor! in select US and Canadian cities on Friday, August 14.
Two other new films could place in this weekend’s top ten: Detective Gui, a comedy/mystery starring Wang Luodan (The Continent) and Taiwanese boy band member Vic Chou, and Roco Kingdom 4, an animated film based on Tencent’s popular online game. The first three installments of Roco earned a combined $23.4M since 2011.
Jonathan Papish of Boxoffice.com contributed to this article.
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