Thursday, June 6, 2013
The Chinese Government Calls It 'The End'
Richard Verrier of the LA Times reports:
Chinese theater owners were ordered by regulators to end [The Croods'] theatrical run two weeks earlier than anticipated.
The move was widely interpreted as a way to make room for local animation films, underscoring how even the Hollywood studios that are most successful in China can be subject to the unpredictable decisions of government authorities eager to expand their own film industry.
The Croods has generated nearly $65 million in ticket sales since its release on April 20 -- making it the top grossing original animated movie in China.
The caveman comedy was expected to run through May 21 but was given an extension until June 21 because of its popularity with Chinese audiences. But the film's very success -- and its unusually long run for a foreign movie in China -- may have contributed to its early exit from theaters.
China Film Group, the state's leading distributor, did not comment on the decision. But the action was widely seen in China as an effort to leave more box office revenue for three local Chinese animated films released this month: Happy Little Submarine 3: Rainbow Treasure, The Adventures of Sinbad 2013 and Kuiba 2.
The decision to pull The Croods from theaters marks the latest incident in which government authorities have sought to limit the box office haul of a Hollywood movie, or schedule "blackout periods" for foreign movies, in order to give a boost to local product.
To read the full article, click here.