Nature documentary has earned more than $13.5 million at domestic box office
It's an unwritten law of nature: nature films do well with a wide audience.
The 2005 film March of the Penguins remains one of the highest-grossing documentaries of all time, earning more than $77 mil. in North America alone. The latest film under the Disneynature banner hasn't quite achieved penguin numbers, but it's another animal-driven box office hit.
Born in China, which takes a lighthearted look at family dynamics among snow leopards, pandas and golden monkeys, again finished the weekend as the number one nonfiction film in theatrical release, a position its held for two months straight.
According to audience measurement firm comScore, Born in China has now made $13,755,923 in eight weeks of release.
Actor John Krasinski narrates the film, which was directed by Chuan Lu. Previous documentaries from Disneynature include 2015's Monkey Kingdom, 2014's Bears, 2012's Chimpanzee and African Cats from 2011. The unit of Walt Disney Studios is headquartered in Paris.
A documentary narrated and executive produced by Tilda Swinton finished in second place at the domestic box office. Letters from Baghdad tells the story of Gertrude Bell, an intriguing historical figure sometimes known as the "female Lawrence of Arabia."
Restless Creature: Wendy Whelan, about the New York City Ballet star, finished in third place among documentaries. Fourth place went to Sachin: A Billion Dreams, a film about Indian cricket great Sachin Tendulkar, which makes liberal use of reenactments to trace his journey from the age of 10.
Fifth place belonged to ABACUS: Small Enough to Jail, the latest documentary from legendary filmmaker Steve James (Hoop Dreams, Life Itself). His film tells the story of the Sung family and their bank that catered to the Chinese community in New York. It became the only lending institution to face criminal charges in the fallout from the 2008 financial collapse.
Matthew Carey is a documentary filmmaker and journalist. His work has appeared on CNN, CNN.com, TheWrap.com, NBCNews.com and Documentary.org.