Venom may no longer be ruling the stateside box office, but in China, Sony's symbiote anti-hero just destroyed Fantastic Beasts 2 financially. Considering the amount of trepidation among fans as to whether or not the Venom character could even carry a solo movie - especially one that completely excised his connection to Spider-Man - it's safe to say that the Tom Hardy-fronted film has blasted through all expectations. Well, at least when it comes to financial success, as judgments of the final product's quality have been more mixed.
Made on a reported budget of about $100 million, Venom began its big run by smashing through the domestic record for an opening weekend in October, with over $80 million. The film has held on valiantly in the weeks since, slipping only a single spot on the domestic chart in each weekend since its release. At this point, Venom has hauled in more than $200 million in the U.S., and also performed extremely well in foreign markets, earning nearly $600 million in countries other than its home.
Venom made another huge splash last week, opening in China to Sony's highest number ever in that country, $111 million. Chinese moviegoers clearly love them some symbiote, as Gitesh Pandya of Box Office Guru reports that Venom repeated at #1 this weekend in China, easily crushing the opening of Warner Bros. sequel Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. Venom earned $51 million, while the latest entry into the extended Harry Potter universe earned only $37.5 million.
The fact that Fantastic Beasts 2 is underperforming in China isn't exactly a shock, as it's coming up short of expectations stateside too. Holding the dubious distinction of being the worst reviewed Harry Potter franchise entry to date, The Crimes of Grindelwald has been controversial from the start, due to its decision to cast Johnny Depp in the title role. Depp has been under nearly constant fire ever since being accused of spousal abuse by his former wife Amber Heard, although the iconic actor has repeatedly insisted he's not guilty of that which he's accused.
With Venom rapidly approaching the $800 million mark worldwide, one wonders just how many famous superhero films it'll pass on the all-time chart along the way. It's already well past Justice League, Guardians of the Galaxy, Deadpool 2, Logan, and X-Men: Days of Future Past. Deadpool and Spider-Man 2 are also within reach. At the end of the day, it looks like Venom was right, he really can do whatever he wants, at least financially. One wonders if Venom will manage to remain atop the Chinese box office next weekend, after managing to successfully devour Johnny Depp's Grindelwald.
Source: Gitesh Pandya