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War blockbuster sequel leads China's advance holiday box office

XINHUA 徽标 XINHUA 2022/1/23 Zhang Yunlong,unreguser
© Provided by XINHUA

Cast members of the film the Battle at Lake Changjin pose for a group photo on the red carpet for the 11th Beijing International Film Festival in Beijing, capital of China, Sept. 20, 2021. (Xinhua/Chen Zhonghao)

BEIJING, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- The sequel to the 2021 war blockbuster "The Battle at Lake Changjin" currently leads China's advance box office sales for the upcoming week-long Spring Festival holiday, usually a lucrative moviegoing period.

"The Battle at Lake Changjin II" hit 47 million yuan (about 7.40 million U.S. dollars) in advance sales as of Sunday evening.

The amount accounts for around two-thirds of the preview and advance sales of eight new titles set for release on Feb. 1, or Spring Festival, said movie data platform Maoyan.

The film also has the highest number of people indicating they "want to watch" it on Maoyan, with more than 920,000 votes as of Sunday.

Set during the War to Resist U.S. Aggression and Aid Korea (1950-1953), "The Battle at Lake Changjin" tells the story of Chinese People's Volunteers (CPV) fighting bravely in freezing weather in a vital campaign at Lake Changjin, also known as Chosin Reservoir.

Its sequel, of which the Chinese title also roughly translates to "Watergate Bridge," follows CPV soldiers of the same company as they take on a new task. And this time, their battlefield is a crucial bridge on the retreat route of American troops.

"Nice View," one of the eight films, comes in second on the preview and advance holiday sales chart, with more than 20 million yuan.

Comedies "Only Fools Rush In" and "Too Cool To Kill" rank third and fourth, respectively, with over 15 million yuan each.

The advance holiday sales of director Zhang Yimou's new film with the working title "Snipers," also set during the War to Resist U.S. Aggression and Aid Korea, has exceeded 10 million yuan.

The Spring Festival holiday last year generated total revenue of more than 7.8 billion yuan, a record high, at China's box office. 

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