Friday, January 22, 2010

Avatar 2D is back in China

Source #1
Source #2 
(both in Chinese)

What a week. After the enormous uproar the news of pulling 2D screens off theaters in China has created, the latest report says the decision has been partially reverted. For the cities which don't have 3D screens, they are allowed to show the 2D version of Avatar again this weekend and beyond. For theaters who have already sent the 2D copy back, the distributors are re-mailing them out, and they should receive it by Sunday. There are also forum posts saying that even some cities with 3D screens are getting the 2D ones again, but to what degree is unclear, and it could be restricted to a few individual cases. Still, looks like it will be mostly up to the theaters' own discretion for deciding which films to show, a practice taken for granted in many other countries. For once, people's wish won out, and it's one big embarrassment for China Film Group and the authority of Chinese film industry.

The core reason for the change of heart? Apparently the attention surrounding the initial news has created such negative buzz on Confucius (many on Internet forums were calling for boycotting the film) that it was off to a dismal start on Friday. The rumor has that the figure could be less than 10m yuan ($1.5m), downright terrible for a release of this scale and a film that was supposed to be one of the pillars for the Chinese New Year holiday season. There is only so much the authority could do to facilitate the ticket sales of a film, and the situation with Confucius appears beyond saving that the only choice is to bring Avatar 2D back into theaters.

So in the end, the original decision backfired completely. Avatar got more free publicity, and Confucius was unnecessarily hurt in the process. Hopefully lesson learned for those who need to learn, and this episode will be fully behind us.


  1. Good to hear the Chinese people standing up for what's right.


    People of China said:
    "We send them a message, that They can't take whatever They want! Cause THIS IS OUR LAND!"

  3. ิBunsaiiiiii
    Thank you China government!
    I'll go to see Confucius and invite my friend's too!
    That's call spirit.

  4. Fantastic, good to see the movie back in theaters.

    Maybe the Chinese viewers could share what they think about the movie with us? I have heard that it is doing very well there.