It's Hollywood,silly!

By Xu Fan ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-07-09 07:41:45

It's Hollywood,silly!

Bryce Dallas Howard, from left, as Claire, Chris Pratt as Owen, Nick Robinson as Zach and Ty Simpkins as Gray, in a scene from the movie, Jurassic World, directed by Colin Trevorrow, in the latest installment of Steven Spielberg's groundbreaking Jurassic Park series.[Photo/Agencies]

Despite a nearly 50 percent rise in Chinese box-office returns this year, local moviemakers aren't smiling. Xu Fan reports.

The Chinese box office surged nearly 50 percent in the first half of the year, but with more than half the earnings coming from foreign movies, domestic producers aren't a happy bunch.

Since overtaking Japan as the world's second-largest movie consumer in 2012, China has grossed a record 20.3 billion yuan ($3.3 billion) from 156 movies released between January and June, a rise of 49 percent as compared to 2014, according to the country's media regulator.

The Chinese market, which has maintained an average growth rate of more than 30 percent in the past five years, took 96 days to cross the 10 billion yuan mark and 175 days to surpass 20 billion yuan, the fastest ever in the history of Chinese cinema during the past six month.

In February, homegrown productions nudged out Hollywood for the first time to top world box-office records for a single month, bringing in 4.13 billion yuan. During the Spring Festival holiday from Feb 19-25, a record 1.8 billion yuan was grossed by Chinese theaters, mostly by local movies.

The 10 top-grossing titles in that month included seven Chinese movies (led by The Man from Macao II at 974 million yuan), a Sino-French production (Wolf Totem) and two Hollywood flicks (The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1).

Chinese moviemakers' good run at the box office, however, ended soon with March being a historically low-income month and the three months thereafter being recaptured by Hollywood.

The high-octane Fast and Furious 7 made the most money ever in Chinese box-office history, with 2.4 billion yuan, and that helped the country's theaters earn a total profit of 4.11 billion yuan in April, leading to a 126 percent rise from the same period last year.

In the past six months, 53.3 percent of the box office was taken by foreign movies, dominated by Fast and Furious 7, Avengers: Age of Ultron (1.46 billion yuan) and Jurassic World (1.26 billion yuan).

The blockbusters that crossed the milestone of 500 million yuan included four homegrown productions and seven imported titles, according to Entgroup, a Chinese entertainment research company. Industry insiders say, rising enthusiasm for cinema among Chinese moviegoers and a boom in the number of screens and disposable income among Chinese have pushed box-office profits higher.

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