BEIJING -- China's B.O. surged 36% to $1.79 billion (RMB10.99 billion) in the first half of 2013, riding high on a powerful performance by homegrown pics, according to data from the government org, the State General Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television.
Ticket sales for Chinese films increased 144% to $1.12 billion (RMB6.85 billion), while imported films posted $670 million (RMB4.14 billion) in B.O., down 21%.
B.O. champ in the first half of this year was Stephen Chow's "Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons," (pictured) which took $200 million (RMB1.25 billion) by the end of June, followed by "Iron Man 3" at $123 million (RMB755 million) and "So Young" at $117 million (RMB719 million.)
Of the top ten highest-grossing films, four were Chinese, accounting for 54% of total revenues in the first half.
The movie data follows a report earlier this week which showed that total revenues from China's entertainment sector rose 20% last year to $56.7 billion (RMB348 billion).
Chinese B.O. is on track for a strong performance in the full year -- B.O. revenues hit $2.77 billion (RMB17 billion) last year, up 30% from 2011, marking an average annual growth of 34% in the decade between 2002 to 2012.
The State General Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television was formed from an amalgamation of the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television, which was responsible for broadcast media and film, and the General Administration of Press and Publication, which dealt with print media and books.