Jackie Chan's 'Rush Hour 3' struggles at Hong Kong box office

HONG KONG: Jackie Chan's new action comedy "Rush Hour 3" may have performed well at the U.S. box office, but it apparently hasn't clicked with his fellow Hong Kongers.

The movie has made only HK$4 million (US$512,000; €380,000) in the five days since it opened in Hong Kong on Thursday, distributor Celestial Pictures said Tuesday.

By comparison, Chan's action comedy "Rob-B-Hood" made HK$6.3 million in Hong Kong in its first three days last year, as did his 2005 action epic "The Myth."

"Rush Hour 3" meanwhile topped the U.S. box office in its opening weekend, making US$49.1 million (€36.4 million) in the U.S. and Canada. In the two weeks since it opened, the movie has notched up nearly US$88 million (€65.3 million).

The "Rush Hour" series, comedies that revolve around the racial and social differences between a pair of police officers — one Chinese (Chan) and the other black (Chris Tucker). The series has been critical in establishing Chan's reputation in Hollywood.

The first installment, "Rush Hour," released in 1998, was the first Chan movie to break the US$100 million mark at the U.S. box office, earning more than US$141 million, according to figures compiled by the box office tracking Web site Box Office Mojo.

Chan won't be able to test "Rush Hour 3" on the larger Chinese audience because the leading distributor in mainland China has decided not to import it. An executive at the state-run China Film Group said the company didn't think the film had a market in China.

Hollywood trade publication Variety, however, reported that Chinese officials were concerned about scenes that involve Chan and Tucker's characters battling Chinese gangsters.

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