‘Star Wars’ Soars to Stellar Opening in China
Disney’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” has opened with a record-setting $33 million in China on Saturday.
The studio said the seventh Star Wars set Chinese records for best Disney opening day and the best Saturday opening day.
China, the second-largest market in the world after the U.S., is the final territory in the world to receive the blockbuster.
“The Force Awakens,” directed by J.J. Abrams, is expected to become the the third-largest worldwide grosser of all time this weekend, passing the $1.67 billion grossed worldwide by “Jurassic World” last year. After less than a month in theaters, it will trail only “Avatar” at $2.78 billion and “Titanic” at $2.19 billion.
The space saga set a U.S. record on Wednesday by passing “Avatar” and has a domestic gross of $781 million as of Friday.
Disney has marketed “The Force Awakens” aggressively in China, where the “Star Wars” saga has a short history because the first six films have not been released commercially — although they have played on television and in legal and illegal home entertainment formats.
Daisy Ridley and John Boyega, robots BB8 and R2D2, director JJ Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy were all on hand at a Dec. 27 premiere in Shanghai. “The Force Awakens” will come off screens by Feb. 8, the first day of the peak Chinese New Year season.