Adam Driver-starring sci-fi adventure film “65” has been approved for theatrical release in mainland China. It will hit cinemas on March 31, some three weeks after the film began to release in other international territories.
The film is branded as a Columbia Pictures title and will be released by the Sony label in most territories. In China, however, all revenue-sharing import titles are officially handled by a state-owned enterprise. The Hollywood studio’s Chinese office theoretically operates in an advisory capacity, though in practice it is likely to be involved in marketing strategy and p&a decisions.
The film has a survival-quest narrative. After a catastrophic crash on an unknown planet, pilot Mills (Driver) quickly discovers he’s actually stranded on Earth some 65 million years ago. Now, with only one chance at rescue, Mills and the only other survivor, Koa (Ariana Greenblatt), must make their way across an unknown terrain riddled with dangerous prehistoric creatures in an epic fight to survive.
The film hails from the writers of “A Quiet Place” and producer Sam Raimi. It was written and directed by Scott Beck and Bryan Woods and produced by Raimi, Deborah Liebling and Zainab Azizi. It is also produced by Beck and Bryan Woods. Executive producers are Maryann Brandon, Doug Merrifield, Jason Cloth and Aaron L. Gilbert.
Hollywood films have begun to trickle back into mainland Chinese cinemas after a near drought in 2022 and an unofficial ban on Marvel-branded movies that ran from mid-2019 until early 2023.
With the exception of “Avatar: The Way of Water,” Hollywood films have largely under-performed in their comeback. “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” is the highest-grossing this year with a cumulative of $37 million after three weekends on release.
Others released and upcoming include “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” (released on Feb. 3 and grossing $15.7 million to date); “The Son” (Feb. 24, $220,000); “M3gan” (March 17); “Shazam! 2” (March 17); “A Man Called Otto” (March 24); “Dungeons & Dragons” (March 31); and “Super Mario” (April 5). Earlier this week, it was confirmed that “The Woman King” will get a China release on April 14, and that 2018 Indian hit “Sui Dhaaga: Made in India” will release in China on March 31.