It was The Viral Factor vs Perfect Two at the CNY boxoffice, grit vs fluff, violence vs love, Dante Lam vs Kevin Chu. So who won?
Perfect Two, the Vic Chou-Ella-Xiao Xiao Bin starrer.
No surprise really.
Perfect Two is family-oriented and the Taiwanese typically go for this type of films. Think You Are The Apple of My Eye and Hear Me. Besides, it has the adorable combo of Zai Zai and Xiao Xiao Bin.
The Viral Factor, on the other hand, is typical Dante Lam/Hong Kong bang-bang.
Of course, its main attraction is having Nicholas Tse and Jay Chou together.
Here are comparative figures from MSN Entertainment:
The Viral Factor: NT$800 million (US$26 million) vs Perfect Two: NT$250 million (US$8.36 million)
January 21 earnings:
The Viral Factor: NT$540,000 (US$18,000) vs Perfect Two: NT$1.92 million (US$64,000)
Estimated earnings across Taiwan during the holidays
The Viral Factor: NT$810,000 (US$27,000) vs Perfect Two: NT$4 million (US$134,000)
Tweets and blogs, however, are saying that The Viral Factor took the boxoffice lead in Hong Kong (where there are other Lunar New Year movies too like All’s Well That Ends Well and I Love HK 2012), Malaysia and Singapore. This is no surprise either since Nic and Jay have more regional appeal.
It’s funny though reading some early reviews on Twitter about The Viral Factor, pointing to a strong action movie (it’s Dante Lam, but what else) with decent acting, but has a poorly written script. Someone also said that Nic’s overacting was balanced by Jay’s underacting, although Andy On’s English diction was beyond saving.
If The Viral Factor continues to take the lead in other markets outside Taiwan, then it will be the runaway winner obviously. But it will be interesting to see how the two films will fare in China, which is the market that truly matters. Love Is Not Blind, last year’s biggest boxoffice surprise in the mainland, was a low-budget rom-com so Perfect Two may stand a chance. But then again, You Are The Apple of My Eye hasn’t been doing well as expected in the mainland, thanks in part to bootleg copies and some scenes being censored.
If I were to choose between the two films though, I will go for cute. Sorry Jay.
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