Maoyan Entertainment (“Maoyan” or “the Company”) (Hong Kong: 1896), a leading platform providing innovative Internet-empowered entertainment services in China, cited data showing that cinemas in China successfully accomplished an orderly reopening, after a 178-day closure triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic, due to effective implementation of various prevention and control measures that put the safety of moviegoers first.
On July 16, the China Film Administration released guidelines for the prevention and control of the epidemic in theaters, which allowed those in low-risk areas to open on July 20. According to Maoyan data, China saw 1,271 cinemas light up their screens in 175 cities on the first day of cinemas reopening. Theaters open on the first day accounted for about 11.2 percent of the nation’s total. About 155,000 moviegoers attended screenings, generating a one-day box office of RMB3.476 million.
Among the cities in low-risk areas that resumed screenings on the first day, Shanghai, Hangzhou and Changsha were the top three. Shanghai saw 128 theaters open, and Hangzhou had 64, in both cases representing about 32 percent of the total number of local cinemas. Changsha saw 24 theaters open, about 18 percent of the total. Other key markets with screenings included Chengdu, Nanjing, Shenzhen, Ningbo, Jinan, Jiaxing and Jinhua.
To maintain a safe theater experience, current guidelines call for theaters to limit attendance to 30 percent of capacity, and first-day attendance rates of 12.4% were well within this safety limit.
More than 20 films were screened on the first day, including the newly released film “A First Farewell,” Chinese thriller “Sheep Without a Shepherd,” Pixar film “Coco,” Chinese patriotic action movie “Wolf Warrior 2,” Chinese animation movie “Ne Zha,” Chinese comedy “Goodbye Mr. Loser” and American drama “The Pursuit of Happyness.” The top three at the box office were “A First Farewell,” “Sheep Without a Shepherd” and “Coco.”
In addition to the opening batch of films that screened on the first day, a number of films are expected to be released over the course of the summer, including returns of the Lebanese drama “Capernaum,” Disney animation movie “Zootopia,” American comedy-drama “A Dog’s Journey,” plus new films such as “Dolittle,” “Bloodshot,” “Mr. Miao,” “The Enigma of Arrival,” “Sonic the Hedgehog,” “Love You Forever” and “Wild Grass.” All of these upcoming movies have individually generated over 10,000 “Maoyan Interested” clicks on the Maoyan App.
As the industry continues to recover in an orderly manner, more films will be available to attract audiences into cinemas with better content, according to Maoyan. The results from the industry’s first day of returning represented an important starting point for the 2020 film market. This summer, Maoyan hopes and expects to see even better results to come.