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What makes a movie a smash hit? Is it compelling dialogue? An engrossing story? Expensive action sequences? One state-made movie in China has found the answer: forcing people to go! This is one movie you can't miss--seriously.
Coming this summer to theaters across China: The state-sponsored movie Beginning of the Great Revival. It will be a box office smash, making at least $124 million—and that's mandated by the state.
The movie is a commemoration of the Communist Party's 90th anniversary, but ticket sales aren't exactly as high as planned.
So state-run companies have been required to book entire theaters for their employees and family members to go see it.
And when forcing people to go isn't enough, the Party has reportedly threatened to block the release of more popular movies, like Transformers and Harry Potter, unless the desired number of tickets get sold.
Plus, it seems some theaters have found another solution. These are tickets for Beginning the Great Revival, but have other popular movies hand written on them. They come from several cities across China. It appears these theaters are selling tickets to other movies—but letting the computer record they're for the Great Revival.
Even with such creative marketing, though, the movie has fallen short of its desired box office. It's made only about $50 million since its opening.