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China lifts blackout on Western film releases

20-Aug-2021 • No Time To Die

As if 'No Time To Die' was not facing enough headwinds at the global box office already, MI6 confirmed earlier this month that the China release date had been pulled due to the country enacting a blackout on Western films being released.

In fact, 'F9' was the last Hollywood film to see a release in China. Subsequent tentpoles such as 'Black Widow' and 'The Suicide Squad' have not been released in China due to the government mandates.

With the lifting of restrictions today, Universal Pictures could well put a China release date for back on the schedule.

MI6 understands that a copy of 'No Time To Die' was with Chinese censors before the original pandemic delay in March 2020, leaving a digital copy of the film outside of the control of the studio. Fortunately, the film has not leaked.

As noted in our extensive box-office analysis, the studio will still only earn 25% of the ticket sales from China, meaning its headline box office total is not as important as other territories.

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