Chinese propaganda film 1921 outperforms Hollywood releases in China with $13 million opening day

The film also celebrates the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China

Peony Hirwani
Friday 02 July 2021 12:42
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Explosions on Chinese film set

The Chinese propaganda film 1921 has achieved $13m (£9.4) on its opening day, making its way towards the rundown of China’s biggest films of the year.

The state-sanctioned film was released in theatres on Thursday (1 July). It portrays the historic moment of the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and re-enacts the story of the party’s initial years.

The film also celebrates the 100th anniversary of the founding of the CPC.

The movie has reportedly outperformed many major Hollywood releases, including A Quiet Place Part II, Cruella, and Peter Rabbit 2.

According to Chinese entertainment platform Maoyan, the combined box office reached $24.6m (£17.8) because of costly preview screenings.

Variety reported that the film contributed 70 per cent of the national box office, and accounted for 39 per cent of all screenings.

1921 trailer

Earlier this year, the same film was premiered as the opening night selection of the Shanghai International Film Festival, which sparked a heated debate.

As reported by Variety, patriots believed that the posters and official cast list (with a long roster of 100 celebrities) do not do justice to the people the film portrays.

One Twitter user from Hong Kong highlighted how Chinese nationalists seemed angry that “a hardcore propaganda film” was not patriotic enough.

He wrote: “I am truly cackling the Chinese Nationalists are now mad at a hardcore propaganda film being not patriotic enough hahahahhahaha.”

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Another propaganda blockbuster film called Chinese Doctors is set to release in the country on 9 July.

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