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With Ready Player One, Steven Spielberg has delivered a massive ode to the world of pop culture. The film debuted over the weekend, and the box office numbers have started to roll in. Now, it seems that Ready Player One is proving successful with most audiences, but it looks like China is where the real money seems to be for this blockbuster outing.
It looks like audiences in China were definitely ready for Ready Player One, as the film is off to an absolutely stellar start overseas. Specifically, the film has earned an estimated $61.7 million in its opening weekend, which dwarfs Ready Player One's domestic haul of $52.3 million. (Ready Player One was still #1 in the States this weekend.) Outside of China and the U.S., Ready Player One continues to earn in other markets, as well. Variety reports the film opened to roughly $8.1 million in Korea, $7.3 million in the United Kingdom, $6.1 million in Russia, and $6 million in France.
Ready Player One's box office strength also showcases how the film has performed better internationally than it has at the domestic box office. Like Steven DeKnight's Pacific Rim Uprising, the film has made more than twice its domestic gross during its opening weekend at the international box office, leading to its $181.2 million global opening weekend.
Oddly enough, Ready Player One and Pacific Rim Uprising both feature sequences involving giant robots duking it out in massive battles. Given how well city-destroying action translates overseas, it makes sense that both films are doing so well with Chinese audiences. Now it looks like it's merely a matter of time before Ready Player One surpasses the $200 million cost of production and marketing.
For those of you who have not seen the film yet, Ready Player One is an adaptation of Ernest Cline's 2011 book of the same name. It follows a young man named Wade Watts (X-Men franchise star Tye Sheridan in the film) as he adventures through an advanced virtual reality realm known as The OASIS to hunt for a mysterious Easter egg left by a dead tech guru. By finding the egg, Wade can earn a new life for himself and escape his terrible life in dystopian Columbus, Ohio. However, things turn deadly when an evil corporation begins to hunt Wade and his friends in its own hunt for the egg. Overall, the premise has gone over well with audiences, earning an A- Cinemascore along with its box office numbers.