China box office: 'Turtles' and 'Now You See Me 2' get boost from local partners

China box office: 'Turtles' and 'Now You See Me 2' get boost from local partners
Donatello, from left, Michelangelo, Leonardo and Raphael in a scene from "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows." (Lula Carvalho / Paramount Pictures)

American studio films backed by Chinese partners dominated the box office last week in the Middle Kingdom.

Paramount Pictures’ “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows” invaded Chinese theaters on Saturday, boosted by Chinese financing partners Alibaba and Wanda Pictures, racking up $26.2 million in its first two days in cinemas.

But the reptiles were not strong enough to defeat Lionsgate's "Now You See Me 2" — co-financed by Hunan TV — as the magic-themed film dominated the box office for the second week running.

"Now You See Me 2" earned $39.4 million in China in the seven days ending Sunday, according to film industry consulting firm Artisan Gateway, bringing its total haul since June 24 to $83.5 million. The original, "Now You See Me," earned $22.1 million in China.

In second place was "Independence Day: Resurgence," which earned $30.3 million last week, bringing the 20th Century Fox title's 10-day total to $64.7 million.

"Turtles" was third for the full-week frame.

Two Chinese productions rounded out the top five spots at the box office, Artisan said. The action comedy "Bounty Hunters" from Shanghai Mingyi Media opened Friday and earned $18 million. Bona Film's "No One's Life Is Easy" earned $900,000 from Thursday to Sunday.

"Finding Dory," meanwhile, has become one of Pixar's best-performing films in China, with about $36 million in receipts.

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