Lulu The Movie takes No. 3 spot on local box-office charts, behind only huge Hollywood titles

Cinema still from Lulu The Movie, starring Michelle Chong.
Cinema still from Lulu The Movie, starring Michelle Chong. PHOTO: HUAT FILMS

The rags-to-riches story of a girl from China who comes to Singapore with big dreams and an even bigger hairdo seems to have struck a chord with local moviegoers.

The comedy Lulu The Movie has earned roughly $650,000 in its first weekend on the back of 29 screens, making it the third highest-grossing movie over that period, ending on Nov 27.

It was beaten only by two Hollywood studio productions, Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them (in its second week at No. 1) and the Disney animated feature Moana, at No. 2.

But on a per screen average, the film - written, directed and starring Michelle Chong - beat Moana, which was released the same week as Lulu. Lulu earned about $22,000 per screen, compared with $15, 751 for the Disney picture.

If revenue from sneak previews on Nov 18 and 19 are included, Lulu's box-office takings rise to $700,000.

 
 

The good turnout validates the marketing strategy taken by Lulu's maker, Huat Films: to use personal appearances at getai (street theatre) and bilingual posters to make sure that Mandarin speakers were aware of the movie, based on a character created on the English-language TV sketch show The Noose.

Ms Diana Foo, 31, a producer with Huat Films, attributes the film's strong performance to positive word-of-mouth.

"We have had lots of postive feedback from viewers actively sharing on social media," she says.