Thursday, October 1, 2020

Disney’s ‘Mulan’ gets slow box office start in China

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“Mulan” drew softbox office sales on its opening day in China, where Disney had gambled on making big money.

The live remake of the 1998 animated classic racked up just over $ 8 million on Friday, according to Chinese online ticketing platform Maoyan. That would put “Mulan,” which was expected to gross more than $ 1 billion globally, on track to earn a disappointing $ 45.5 million in China, the platform predicted.

“I’m pretty sure the total box office dollars won’t come close to what Disney expected,” said LightShed Partners analyst Rich Greenfield. “It’s certainly not going to be a movie that makes a couple hundred million in China.”

Hollywood has been watching the film’s debut in China since the film took a COVID-inspired detour from movie theaters in the US and any other country that has sold subscriptions to Disney’s news streaming service, Disney. +.

Only customers from China and a handful from other Asian countries have the opportunity to see the film on the big screen. Everyone else must pay $ 30 or wait until December 4 to watch it for free on Disney +.

Although “Mulan” is not selling, Greenfield said Disney “deserves credit” for taking a risk that will give him valuable information about his Disney + consumer.

“I think Disney is trying to show Wall Street that it is digital,” he said, before comparing it to “Tenet,” a Hollywood movie that just hit theaters after months of delay due to the coronavirus.

Although Chrisopher Nolan’s spy thriller grossed $ 53 million overseas and $ 20 million in the United States, Greenfield called its box office performance “weak.”

Although Disney has yet to release revenue figures for its Mulan-Disney + experiment, the analyst said Mouse House likely generated more, if not the same amount of revenue as “Tenet” in the United States.

“There is not enough comfort in returning to theaters around the world,” he concluded. “Releasing a great movie in theaters is not working right now.”

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