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"Gravity" hits theatres in China, year-end movie battle on

11-21-2013 09:34 BJT

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By CCTV reporter Shen Li

The end of the year is notoriously competitive at the movie box office and December will see several domestic films go head-to-head. But before that it’s Hollywood’s turn in China.

The much anticipated sci-fi thriller "Gravity" opened in China on Tuesday, a day on which many theatres offer half-price tickets. And "The Hunger Games" sequel "Catching Fire" will follow closely behind, hitting theatres in China on Thursday.

With two heavy-weight champions coming face-to-face, the battle at the box office is officially on.

The year-end movie market has always been a battle for box-office. And the competition is not only from Chinese productions but also from Hollywood blockbusters including "Gravity" and "The Hunger Games". Which side is more likely to have an edge?

"I’ve bought tickets to see 'Red 2'. I like to see Hollywood blockbusters. As for recent Chinese movies, I like 'Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon'. When I come to the cinema, I expect to see blockbusters, and to be blown away," a movie-goer said.

Internet users seem to echo this opinion. On mtime.com, one of China’s largest online movie forums, movies that get most hits are mainly American blockbusters, especially sci-fi movies like "Thor: The Dark World" and "Iron Man 3".

"Iron Man 3" beat "007" and "The Croods" to become the most successful imported film at the box office in the first half of 2013, while "Thor: The Dark World" took full advantage of the double-eleven Singles' Day and is on its way to break the 300 million yuan mark.

Facing such fierce competition, Chinese rom-coms screened in the same period suffered greatly, with home productions taking only 15 percent of the market. However, the situation might change as China’s New Year movie season approaches.

"December is the warm up for the New Year movie season. In our experience, it's Chinese productions that take the lead in December and this year films like 'Personal Tailored' and Ning Hao’s 'No Man’s Land' will be vying for success," said Xie Fang from UME Cineplex Anzhen.

Whether it’s "Gravity" that draws people in or "The Hunger Games" that set people on fire, it’s always a good thing to have more quality films on the market. And with so much on offer, this year-end movie season is definitely luring audiences into theatres for more.

Editor:Zhou Minxi |Source: CCTV.com

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