Single-day ticket sales on Lunar New Year's Day broke records in China this year, with the top grossing movie capturing a broad sweep of Asia from the Middle Kingdom to India.
Leading the pack was "Journey to the West: The Demons Strike Back," the sequel to Hong Kong director-actor Stephen Chow's 2013 film 'Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons." The adventure-comedy flick is based on the 16th century novel of the same name, which details the travels of Buddhist monk Xuanzang and his disciples to India.
Overall, ticket sales hit a total of 802 million yuan ($116.60 million) and single-day ticket sales for 'Journey to the West' topped nearly half at 352 million yuan on the first day of the Lunar New Year, according to online ticketing platform Maoyan.
The film previously holding the record was Chow's 2015 offering, 'The Mermaid,' which raked in 270 million yuan ($39.26 million) on its opening day, state media Xinhua stated.
India proved to be a recurring theme among Chinese filmmakers over the Lunar New Year, with several movies set in the country. Among these were kung fu comedy 'Buddies in India' and the Jackie Chan-fronted "Kungfu Yoga," which earned nearly 187 million yuan and 137 million yuan respectively on Lunar New Year's Day.