China's Film Industry Welcomes $600 Million for a Patriotic Chinese War Film
By Faith Magbanua, August 11, 2017 23:08 PM
'Hero's Welcome', a Chinese war film portraying a Chinese hero saving the day in a war-torn African country has become China's highest-grossing film, gaining more than 4 billion yuan ($600.11 million) at the box office since it was released last month.
Meanwhile, another Chinese film, "Wolf Warrior 2", is expected to rake in a total of 5.5 billion yuan as it hits into the feelings of patriotism and national pride at home.
The information for its box office earnings are from a Chinese online ticketing platform called Maoyan.
According to analysts, the film 'Hero's Welcome', which features a former Chinese special forces soldier, single-handedly evacuating Chinese citizens plagued by Western mercenaries in Africa, could serve as an inspiration to China to create more films that has the same attributes showing love for the country.
On the other hand, Beijing sends more of its nationals abroad to commence film construction as part of its "Belt and Road" initiative.
"Chinese audiences love to see films that resonate with their own recognition of national identity and this movie is more advanced in quality, theme and topicality," said Dong Shu, a Shanghai-based independent film critic.
"For sure making similar movies will be a new direction."
"The Mermaid", known as China's previous highest grossing film was a comedy, which earned a whopping 3.39 billion yuan in early 2016. Shares in Beijing Jingxi Culture & Tourism Co., a distributor of "Wolf Warrior 2" in China, has soared 40 percent since the movie's launch.
While the film was privately financed, it still received a solid support from state organizations, including the mouthpiece of the Communist Party, the People's Daily newspaper.
"An individual will be better with a powerful country behind his back. There is not only Captain America, but also Chinese heroes who fight abroad," the People's Daily wrote on its official Weibo account.
The popularity growth of the movie has jumped, slowing the growth in the Chinese film market, which only grew 3.73 percent last year.
According to Wu Jian, a senior data analyst with Beijing Weiying Technology Co, he said that he had initially predicted that the movie would make 800 million yuan to 1.5 billion yuan.
"We were quite pessimistic about this year's box office outlook before this movie, expecting even a net decline from last year," he said. "But now we might be talking about a 20 percent rise for this year if Hollywood movies also fare well in the second half."
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