Knockout Debut of Marvel Studios' Newest Hero Smashes IMAX Labor Day Records For Global and North American Opening Weekend, and Overall Weekend Box Office
NEW YORK, Sept. 7, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- IMAX Corporation (NYSE: IMAX) broke records at the global box office this weekend as Disney/Marvel Studios' barrier-breaking "Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings" defied the doubters to score a massive opening.
The newest Marvel franchise exploded its way to a four-day holiday opening weekend of $13.6 million in the IMAX global network — the best global September and Labor Day weekend opening ever in IMAX. North America led the way, where "Shang-Chi" delivered $8.5 million across 399 screens — good for 9.4% of the film's domestic box office and a strong per screen average of more than $21,000 — and new records for best domestic September and Labor Day Weekend opening ever in IMAX as well.
Overall, the IMAX global network earned $16.8 million for the weekend — the best global box office weekend ever in September for IMAX and the second-best box office weekend for the company in the pandemic era, behind only the blockbuster 2020 Chinese New Year holiday.
"Shattering Labor Day box office records with an origin story new to many fans, 'Shang-Chi' delivers an emphatic statement: people really want to get back to the movies," said Rich Gelfond, CEO of IMAX. "It's clear that great filmmaking plus an exclusive theatrical release is a winning formula at the box office, and this groundbreaking film has successfully launched an exciting new cinematic journey for Marvel and a strong fall blockbuster slate for the industry."
Internationally, "Shang-Chi" opened to $5.1M of IMAX box office from 391 screens in 66 countries. Six countries set pandemic era opening weekend records, while an additional seven countries had their second-best pandemic era opening weekend, including the UK.
Overall IMAX weekend box office was bolstered by the continued strong performance of Disney/20th Century's "Free Guy" in China, which has now grossed $8.7 million on IMAX China screens — a stunning 14.5% of the nationwide total gross on less than 1% of screens.
"'Shang-Chi' and 'Free Guy' reveal just how much hybrid distribution and the resulting piracy this year have impacted box office and obscured the pent-up demand among moviegoers for the cinema," said Gelfond. "Exclusive theatrical releases continue to see bigger openings, better holds, and have now launched two new blockbuster franchises in the past month that fans will enjoy across screens for years to come."
The strong performance of "Shang-Chi" and "Free Guy" jumpstart a strong fall blockbuster film slate for IMAX, which includes MGM/Sony's "No Time To Die" and Warner Bros.' "Dune" — both shot using IMAX cameras — as well as Marvel Studios' "The Eternals" and Sony's "Venom: Let There Be Carnage" and "Ghostbusters: Afterlife," which was just announced last week for IMAX release.
About IMAX Corporation
IMAX, an innovator in entertainment technology, combines proprietary software, architecture and equipment to create experiences that take you beyond the edge of your seat to a world you've never imagined. Top filmmakers and studios are utilizing IMAX theaters to connect with audiences in extraordinary ways, and, as such, IMAX's network is among the most important and successful theatrical distribution platforms for major event films around the globe.
IMAX is headquartered in New York, Toronto, and Los Angeles, with additional offices in London, Dublin, Tokyo, and Shanghai. As of June 30, 2021, there were 1,654 IMAX theater systems (1,569 commercial multiplexes, 12 commercial destinations, 73 institutional) operating in 85 countries and territories. Shares of IMAX China Holding, Inc., a subsidiary of IMAX Corporation, trade on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange under the stock code "1970."
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