Via The HollyWood Reporter, The Last Jedi plummeted 92 percent in its second weekend from a debut of $28.7 million to a $2.4 million. It is one of the worst second-weekend declines ever seen in the Chinese box office. “The Last Jedi has already been completely pulled from cinemas here.” says Jimmy Wu, chairman of nationwide Chinese cinema chain Lumiere Pavilions. He continued: “It’s performed much worse than we could have expected.” The film will finish its run in China with less than $50 million putting its rank somewhere behind bombs like Geostorm (2017).
“The Last Jedi has already been completely pulled from cinemas here.” — Jimmy Wu
Fanink, the Beijing market research firm, has been doing exit polls for major Hollywood releases in China cinemas since 2014. According to James Li, Fanink’s co-founder, “We’ve seen the Star Wars franchise downgrading across all key measures…last Jedi was below average in every category — and you see this reflected at the box office.”
Plenty of speculation has arisen around why Star Wars is failing in China, and particulary why The Last Jedi did so poorly there. That it opened up against the popular romcom The Ex-File. That the Chinese do not have an invested interest in the series because Star Wars was never released in China back in the 70’s. That Star Wars draws upon inspirations from Japanese culture.
I have another theory:
It is a bad film, with a bad agenda, and that’s a bad combination.