Chinese Film ‘The Great Wall’ Debutes With $67.4M

Starring Matt Damon and directed by Oscar-nominee Zhang Yimou, The Great Wall enters as a legendary co-production pitching itself as the fourth-biggest debut of the year in China.

While Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is skyrocketing into the record books in North America, Legendary Entertainment’s period monster epic The Great Wall is standing tallest in China, the world’s No. 2 box-office market.

The high-profile co-production, which stars Matt Damon as a mercenary fighting for the Middle Kingdom, debuted to a muscular $67.4 million from Friday to Sunday in the country, according to early estimates from local box-office tracker Ent Group (the total can be expected to nudge up slightly come morning, Beijing time).

Directed by Oscar-nominated Chinese helmer Zhang Yimou, the movie is the biggest China-Hollywood co-production ever, with an estimated budget of $150 million. The high-concept, high-stakes project was financed by Legendary, Universal, China Film Group and Le Vision Pictures.

The Great Wall‘s debut is the fourth-biggest opening weekend in China this year, behind local all-time box-office champ The Mermaid, Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War ($96 million) and Legendary’s own Warcraft. (Rogue One doesn’t open in China until Jan. 6.) The three-day estimate includes $7 million from 364 Imax screens, making The Great Wall the second-highest December Imax opening ever.

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