It was love at first sight when Oppenheimer premiered in Chinese cinemas, earning a commanding $5.4 million at the box office on its opening day.
Ticket sales for Nolan’s magnum opus are on par with Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania, while Oppenheimer also enjoyed a robust $300 000 turnout from Chinese moviegoers for the film’s midnight screenings, reviving a timeslot that has struggled in the aftermath of the pandemic.
The secret of Oppenheimer’s success in China is a longstanding appreciation for Nolan’s narratives. Inception, The Dark Knight Rises, and Tenet have been box office hits in the East Asian nation, a highly profitable market with a population of 1.4 billion.
Furthermore, Nolan traveled to China to promote the film. He visited Beijing and Shanghai, where he cleverly enticed moviegoers and the media with previews and personal interactions. By the time Oppenheimer premiered in China, its audience was ready, waiting, and well-acquainted with the biopic’s subject matter due to Nolan’s shrewd diplomacy.
Oppenheimer is already one of the most successful Nolan features ever, and it’s projected to rake in a total of $43 million from Chinese ticket sales. The cumulative effect of the filmmaker’s passion for the project and his campaign to connect audiences with it is that the movie is on the cusp of $800 million at the global box office and the coveted $1 billion box office milestone is moving closer into view.