Local titles dominate mainland Chinese cinema box office over the last weekend. “Never say never“surpassed the previous sensation”Lost in the stars” to lead another strong summer session.

“Never Say Never” (aka “Octagonal”) was officially released on Thursday, before Chinais the most normal Friday system. It grossed $55.3 million (RMB 384 million) between Friday and Sunday, according to verified data from consultancy Artisan Gateway. Add to that some $9.6 million from Thursday and more than $60 million in previews and the film closed Sunday with a cumulative $121 million.

Co-written and directed by actor Wang Baoqiang (“Lost in Thailand”, “Detective Chinatown”), the film tells the story of a man who tries to teach martial arts to orphans. But he is publicly shamed after his efforts were misinterpreted.

According to local sources, however, “Lost in the Stars” was the highest rated movie on Thursday and Friday, before “Never Say Never” dominated with the Saturday and Sunday crowd.

“Lost in the Stars” grossed an additional $44.1 million (RMB 318 million) between Friday and Sunday for a cumulative $428 million after 18 days in Chinese theaters.

Lightchaser animation “Chang An” only got its official release on Saturday, but still ranked third in the weekend chart with $24.8 million (178 million RMB) in just two days of release. ‘activity. Including last week’s previews, the film now has a cumulative $27.8 million (RMB 200 million).

The Hong Kong-produced franchise action movie “The White Storm: Heaven or Hell” premiered on Thursday. Within three days, it grossed $17.9 million (RMB 129 million). In four days, it grossed $24.4 million.

Alpha Pictures’ “Super Wings: Jett Run,” a Chinese film adaptation of a Korean children’s animated series, opened on Saturday and ranked fifth over the weekend with $4.8 million.

Last weekend saw a total domestic box office of $152 million. Artisan Gateway calculates that’s around 61% ahead of last year’s score at the same time of year, and just 11% behind the same point in 2019.

According to local data sources, the highest-ranking Hollywood movie in China over the past weekend was “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts.” It grossed nearly $500,000 for a cumulative 31-day total of $95.0 million.

The “Super Wings” property provides an interesting footnote to the geopolitical controversies plaguing the East Asian film industry.

Currently, the biggest dispute concerns films depicting maps of Asia. Next Hollywood release “Barbie” was banned in Vietnam for showing a map illustrating China’s disputed claims that much of the South China Sea is its territory.

Chinese state media reports that in 2021, China banned the airing of the Korean-made “Super Wings” series on TV and streaming channels due to the inclusion of a map that omitted Tibet. and showed Taiwan as a separate country from the People’s Republic of China. China used military force in 1950 to take control of Tibet. China also claims that Taiwan is a rebel force with which it will be united – by force if necessary.

According to Chinese state media, ‘Super Wings’ got another story wrong, portraying the Mid-Autumn Festival as Korean in origin. Chinese authorities say the holiday originated in China and was later adopted on the Korean Peninsula.

Films produced in Korea have not been allowed to be imported into China since early 2016, due to another geopolitical dispute.

China has banned Korean films in retaliation for the Korean government’s decision to allow the installation of the US-backed THAAD missile defense system on its territory. And, although there were statements on reconciliation and the restarting korean content imports, these have been at a low level on television and close to zero in cinema. For several years, Chinese companies have preferred to buy or license Korean intellectual property and turn it into a Chinese product.