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Just when you thought the summer movie season was over, it’s back for one last moment in the sun. Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation was already a huge hit in the U.S., and it’s opened in the number one position in basically every other country it can be found in. In China, however, it's found itself a new place in the record books. It’s the highest grossing 2D movie in the history of the nation.
Rogue Nation gave itself the best possible start when it had the best opening weekend for a non-3D movie in China, but new numbers show that the film has had some staying power as well. Deadline is reporting that the fifth Mission: Impossible movie has now supplanted Interstellar as the top grossing movie ever that wasn’t released in 3D. The Tom Cruise vehicle has now broken the $124 million mark, putting the $122 million from Christopher Nolan’s sci-fi epic in the rearview mirror.
Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation’s success has even allowed it to overtake some of the major 3D releases in the nation. Terminator: Genisys had an opening weekend that dwarfed Mission: Impossible’s, but that film hasn’t been able to hold the audience that Cruise and company have. Arnold has only been able put together a $112 million Chinese box office. That’s nothing to sneeze at – especially when compared to the business that the film did here in the United States - but it does go to show that slow and steady does win the race.
The Chinese box office has become a major player in the global game in recent years. With the largest population of any country in the world, there is a huge movie going audience that has led to Hollywood going out of their way to appeal to them. Thanks to the success that Furious 7 had in China, it was the top-grossing movie in the history of the country until it was overtaken by domestic film Monster Hunt earlier this month. And it was even bigger there than in the U.S. At this point, it’s basically impossible to have a successful movie if it isn’t successful in China. It’s part of the reason that the 2D record is actually important and not just a semantic argument. China actually limits the number of foreign films released each year and requires that a certain number of films be released in 3D. This makes the success of those films all the more important.
We’ll see how long this record lasts, as the speed with which box office records are being broken means that this could be a short lived victory lap. That being said, there’s always the next sequel.