The story appears on

Page A5

January 4, 2010

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro » Entertainment and Culture

Local cinemas in high hopes for 3D 'Avatar'

TODAY'S Chinese release of James Cameron's 3D science fiction epic "Avatar" has solved a dilemma for local cinemas - the lack of powerful new films.

Since the debut of Hong Kong director Teddy Chan's period epic "Bodyguards and Assassins" on December 18, there were almost no new pictures in local theaters.

Movie theaters in the city suffered from a lack of new appealing blockbusters over the New Year holiday.

Shanghai United Cinema Lines, the city's largest cinema chain, took in only about 5 million yuan (US$735,000) at the box office during the three-day holiday.

"The holiday box office takings should have been at least 2.5 million yuan more," said Wu Hehu, the chain's deputy director.

"To avoid direct competition from 'Avatar,' many domestic films such as Zhang Yimou's comedy thriller 'A Simple Noodle Story' advanced their screening time weeks ahead."

Fearing Hollywood mega-productions, many new Chinese pictures were squeezed into a short screening time, particularly in the early and mid-December.

In addition to "A Simple Noodle Story" and "Bodyguards and Assassins," other films include the fantasy film "The Storm Warriors II" and adventure film "The Treasure Hunter."

It not only made it difficult for audiences to choose the right movie from so many candidates at that time, but also led to a shortage of films during the holiday.

"As far as I know, a few movie buffs did resort to other kinds of entertainment during the holiday, such as karaoke, shopping and board games," Wu added.

Local cinema managers say "Avatar," the first Hollywood film to be shown in China this year, is bound to dominate the box office this month.

The film is director Cameron's first feature since 1997's "Titanic" and tells the story of a former Marine sent to exploit a planet rich in resources.

"Avatar" is expected to be a hit until the release of a few highly anticipated Chinese movies after January 22, including biopic "Confucius" and animation "Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf II."


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend