The Battle At Lake Changjin II leads China's Chinese New Year box office

The Battle At Lake Changjin II raked in more than 2.4 billion yuan (S$510 million). PHOTO: THE BATTLE AT LAKE CHANGJIN/WEIBO

BEIJING (XINHUA) - The sequel to the China's war blockbuster The Battle At Lake Changjin (2021) currently leads China's box office for the week-long Spring Festival holiday, which concludes on Sunday (Feb 6).

The Battle At Lake Changjin II had raked in more than 2.4 billion yuan (S$510 million) as of Sunday afternoon since its release on Feb 1, the first day of Chinese New Year, according to statistics from the China Movie Data Information Network.

Set during the Korean War (1950 to 1953) and starring actor Wu Jing and singer Jackson Yee, the first movie tells the story of Chinese soldiers fighting American troops in freezing temperatures in a key campaign at Lake Changjin, or Chosin Reservoir.

The first film grossed over US$913 million (S$1.23 billion) at the worldwide box office, making it the second-highest-grossing film of 2021 after Spider-Man: No Way Home.

Its sequel - the Chinese title translates as Watergate Bridge - follows Chinese soldiers of the same company as they take on a new task. This time, their battlefield is a crucial bridge on the retreat route of American troops.

The sequel saw the return of Wu, 47, and Yee, 21, as well as other principal members of the original cast, with the film also helmed by Chinese director Chen Kaige, as well as Hong Kong directors Tsui Hark and Dante Lam.

The holiday box office chart in China includes eight new titles that hit theatres on Feb 1. The comedy Too Cool To Kill, starring Ma Li and Wei Xiang, is at No. 2 with more than 1.3 billion yuan, while drama Nice View, which also stars Yee, ranks third with more than 630 million yuan.

The Chinese New Year is a lucrative movie season in China as moviegoing has become an increasingly prominent pastime for people during the holiday in recent years.

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