The power and influence of the foreign box office has grown substantially over the course of the last few years, with China leading the pack as one of the largest markets on the planet. Films that barely make a dent in the United States can see wild success in other countries, and the action genre has become one of the most reliable sources for box office gold on a global scale. However, the international market has seldom seen anything like one of its current champions, as the Frank Grillo-fronted Chinese action thriller Wolf Warriors 2 has already pulled in almost half a billion dollars after only two weeks in theaters.
While many members of the American audience may not have even heard of director Wu Jing's Wolf Warriors 2, the film has done some insane business overseas over the course of the last two weeks. The film brought in $163 over the weekend, and it has earned roughly $470 million throughout its theatrical run. Because the movie has only been in theaters for two weekends, something tells us that it has plenty more money left to earn.
The Variety report on Wolf Warriors 2's overseas gross arguably becomes even more impressive when we consider the scale of the first film's box office performance. Despite the overwhelming success of Wolf Warriors 2, the first entry in the franchise only pulled in $89 million during its entire theatrical run. For a film to almost double that number in its second weekend clearly seems to serve as a reliable indication that the franchise is doing something right, as well as the fact that the overseas market is continuing to grow in prominence.
In some ways, Frank Grillo has become a man with a subtle golden touch for films of all shapes and sizes. He had a major role in Gavin O'Connor's critically praised MMA flick, Warrior; he portrayed Brock "Crossbones" Rumlow in Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Captain America: Civil War, and he even starred in arguably the two best entries in The Purge franchise in 2014 and 2016. While he hasn't necessarily entered A-list leading man territory yet, it's pretty clear that he has handily become one of the action genre's most reliable supporting players.
It also doesn't hurt that Wolf Warriors 2 looks like the type of bombastic action thriller that does very well overseas. Focusing on a group of elite special forces operatives, the film follows its heroes as they engage in a deadly battle against a group of mercenaries targeting civilians in a coastal town. It's a simple premise, but simple premises often work incredibly well when a film wants to defy language and culture barriers. Throw in Frank Grillo, and you've got yourself a hit.
CinemaBlend will keep you posted with more box office news as new updates become available. As for upcoming releases, make sure to check out our 2017 movie premiere guide!