LIFE / ENTERTAINMENT
‘Fast and Furious 9’ sure to beat ‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ to become highest-grossing Hollywood film in China since the outbreak of COVID-19
Published: May 19, 2021 07:03 PM
A man walks past the posters of  Fast & Furious 9 at a subway station in Beijing on May 16. Photo: VCG

A man walks past the posters of  Fast & Furious 9 at a subway station in Beijing on May 16. Photo: VCG


Universal Pictures’ action film Fast & Furious 9 will beat Warner Bros’ monster film Godzilla vs. Kong to become the highest-grossing Hollywood movie in China since the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic and may ignite a new wave of movie watching fever since China’s booming May Day holiday in early May, Chinese film ticketing platform Maoyan predicted on Wednesday.

Earlier on Tuesday, IMAX China announced that presales for Fast & Furious 9, which is set to premiere in the Chinese mainland on Friday, a month ahead of North America, has reached 11.7 million yuan ($1.82 million) in the Chinese mainland market, setting a new record for Hollywood film presales since the reopening of movie theaters back in July 2020. The film also ranked at the top of the most-anticipated list on Maoyan with 1.16 million Chinese moviegoers saying they want to watch the film.

Thursday will also be a big day for Chinese romance films as the numbers 520 (May 20) is Chinese internet slang for “I love you.” 

This film combined with Fast and Furious 9 will kick off a new movie-watching wave , according to Maoyan.

“Fast and Furious 9 is sure to top Godzilla vs. Kong to become the highest-grossing Hollywood blockbuster in China since 2020 and might be able to earn about 2.5 billion yuan in the Chinese mainland,” Shi Wenxue, a film critic based in Beijing, told the Global Times on Wednesday. 

According to Shi, the return of director Justin Lin, filming in China, thrilling scenes of space races as well as the series’ overall good reputation are sure to be a draw for audiences.

“The current Chinese film market is particularly important for Hollywood blockbusters. The decision to release Fast and Furious 9 more than a month ahead of North America was made after weighing various factors. The film can earn big in China as it will come after the May Day holiday and so won’t have much competition,” Xiao Fuqiu, a film critic based in Shanghai, told the Global Times. 


The hashtag “Fast and Furious 9 has a release date” has earned 430 million views on China’s Twitter-like Sina Weibo as of Wednesday. Many Chinese netizens expressed their high anticipation for the film. 

One of the film’s stars, US actor John Cena, has been posting videos of himself speaking Chinese to promote the film on his Sina Weibo account. 

On Tuesday afternoon, Universal Pictures announced that it had decided to cancel a release event for Fast and Furious 9 in China, citing security risks after receiving threats over the event. 

Many Chinese netizens suspected that the announcement was just part of a marketing campaign to capture the attention of moviegoers as the “security threat” was not explained in detail and many fans had not even heard of the event until the announcement of its cancelation. 


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