Aamir Khan’s Dangal is unstoppable at Chinese box office despite Wanda boycott
Many online users of Weibo, China’s Twitter, questioned the conspicuous absence of the movie in theatres owned by Wanda Cinemas, the world’s largest cinema chain owner, part of the Dalian Wanda group.Updated: May 13, 2017 17:40 IST
Aamir Khan’s Dangal on Friday saw the best opening for an Indian movie in China gathering positive audience ratings and a touch of controversy on its release in close to 7000 screens across the country.
Many online users of Weibo, China’s Twitter, questioned the conspicuous absence of the movie in theatres owned by Wanda Cinemas, the world’s largest cinema chain owner, part of the Dalian Wanda group.
The group apparently inexplicably backtracked after allotting some 3000 screens for the movie; as of Friday evening, it was being shown in 37 screens owned by Wanda.
Business rivalry could have triggered the decision, online writers speculated.
A writer for box office tracker, Tieba said, “I found that there was nearly no film schedule for Dangal in Wanda cinemas. After closer inspection, I found the company in charge of the domestic distribution of the film was Hua Ying Tian Xia, whose chairman and manager had previously moved from Wanda to Huaying.”
The Entertainment Capital, another website for movie said, “In Wanda cinema line was close to zero, most only one scheduled in a movie theatre where the ticket price was more than 150 Yuan in the VIP Hall. Why did Wanda do it? The reason for this may lie in the Dangal’s distribution company, which is a company controlled by Huayi.”
Another writer for a website @Woyaoyoujinla, said, “Wanda is disgusting, probably because of Huayi’s relationship. I cannot find one session (of the movie) in Taian Wanda cinema! Almost every city is like this! Wanda had a bad future, as they are so narrow minded and how can they make progress!”
Deng Chao (a famous film star with 57 million fans on Weibo) came out in support of Aamir and the movie, “Friend comes from afar, ask you to warmly welcome him. Please repost and support.”
HT contacted the company by phone and email for a comment but was yet to receive any response from the communication team.
Despite the fewer screens, the movie itself was doing well and had made more than PK did when released here two years ago.
By 5 pm (China time), the movie had been screened 28788 times and audience reviews and ratings were very positive
One user wrote, “I saw # “Wrestling” at midnight last night. This movie is definitely good and worth watching. Aamir Khan’s greatness lays in seeing India’s problems, and not just talks, but takes action to do revolutionary. Every movie has a significant impact and this individual has a huge impact on society and government. There is no such filmmaker in China.”
Another user wrote, “My blood was boiling, and it was a shocking movie. I don’t remember how many times had I cried. Praise. Best movie “Wrestling” in the first half of the year.
“Ran to see Dangal and I really got a lot of things to say. Although not yet used to Indian films dubbed in Chinese, each time the two girls started wrestling and participating in various game, I was really excited. Everything could be changed in two minutes, 120 seconds,” wrote one user.
“Never wrote a review for any movie before. It was so touching. I was laughing and crying at the same time. Hope you guys watch it. Believe me, you will love it,” said another user.