‘Kingdom’ Nabs Top China Box Office Opening Ever in US

Forbidden KingdomThe Forbidden Kingdom‘ (功夫之王), the first collaboration between martial arts film legends Jet Li and Jackie Chan, appears to have a set a new record for a “Chinese” film. From Hollywood Today:

It was the first ever pairing of Chinese martial arts stars Jackie Chan and Jet Li, but it had more kick historically than just two great action actors. Especially right now when China is proudly hosting the Olympics, yet embroiled in controversy

It even edged out star director Judd Apatow’s super-promoted ‘Forgetting Sarah Marshall.’

In China film history, only Jet Li’s ‘Hero’ in 2002 opened nearly as well in America, at $18 million in 2,000 theaters for an eventual domestic total of $54 million. In 2000, ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’ opened modestly in just 16 U.S. theaters, eventually building to a stunning $128 million U.S. box office. Chan’s “Rush Hour” series were also box office heroes, but are considered US studio films, not Chinese.

The film, which features a young white teenager as its protagonist (a la Karate Kid), has gotten middling reviews.


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