"Avatar" (James Cameron, 2010), $221.9 million
The success of James Cameron's Avatar announced China's arrival as one of the world's most vibrant film markets—and also one of the most unpredictable. Opening in the first week of January 2010, the 2D version of the movie was pulled early from cinemas by government authorities to make way for better performances by domestic productions. China's 3D infrastructure was also not nearly as developed then as it is today. Nonetheless, the film was the biggest cinematic event in Chinese history.