Universal’s animated family film opens No. 1 with $4M first day and is looking at $13.8M for the weekend
Universal’s “Despicable Me 2” opened at No. 1 in China Friday, with a strong $4 million.
The 3D animated kids film played in roughly 3,000 locations, including all of the nation’s 141 Imax screens, and dominated. It’s on pace for a $13.8 million first weekend, the studio reported.
The result is particularly impressive, because this opening is seven months after its global theatrical release and the original film, “Despicable Me,” was never released in China. ...
Chris Meledandri has pretty convincingly demonstrated that you don't have to spend $150 or $200 million to get yourself a blockbuster.
You just have to own a pretty focused idea of what film you want to make, then make it. And keep your costs in check.
Add On: DM2 no doubt prospered in the Middle Kingdom because of this:
Despicable How did Universal pull off [a big release] in a country that’s notorious for piracy? Universal Pictures President, International, David Kosse tells me the studio was “thrilled to have the movie go in, but we had to acknowledge that over six months, people had seen it.” So, a means to entice folks to theaters needed to be devised. Figuring that since the many who may have had access to a pirated version would have seen one that was subtitled or done with a sub-par dub, the studio did a “proper, great Mandarin dub with local voices that (Chinese audiences) know,” Kosse says. ...
It's worth pointing out that Mr. Meledandri, when he was running Blue Sky Animation, also used high-end local talent to dub Fox animated features. The strategy has paid off like a rigged slot machine with the Ice Age series. And it seems to be working with Despicable Me.