US video hosting platform Netflix said on Thursday that it had entered a partnership with China Film Company Ltd and other producers to stream worldwide the Chinese disaster sci-fi smash hit The Wandering Earth.
The deal comes after the Chinese-made production depicting a China-led joint bid to save the Earth from being engulfed by a bloated sun reaped more than 4 billion yuan (US$600 million) in box-office recipients as of this week, piquing intense interest among cinephiles elsewhere.
The blockbuster adapted from a namesake novella by Chinese author Liu Cixin is now the second-highest-grossing Chinese-made movie of all time, which continues to dominate primetime slots at cineplexes nationwide.
Xinhua reported that critical response to the movie, after its US premiere at a selected number of cinemas in New York and Chicago, was generally positive.
The film also has had a limited release in Canada, Australia and New Zealand. On film rating site Rotten Tomatoes, the movie earned a 67% critics rating and 89% audience score.
Netflix gave no date for releasing the film, but offered to translate the dialogue into 28 languages for its global subscribers in almost 190 countries and regions.
“Netflix is committed to providing entertainment lovers with access to a wide variety of global content,” said Jerry Zhang, manager of content acquisition at Netflix. “With its high-quality production and story-telling, we believe that The Wandering Earth will be loved by sci-fi fans around the world.”
Some Chinese netizens said the Netflix deal was “good news” and they were proud that a Chinese film was hitting the international stage.
“Now it’s foreigners’ turn to watch subtitles,” one said.
The big-budget science-fiction thriller about an audacious plan of mankind to propel the Earth out of the solar system and maneuver its trajectory to avoid a collusion with Jupiter has also been hailed by the Communist Party’s Publicity Department as well as cadres in charge of ideological education as a commercially successful production that promoted “China’s core values such as collectivism, patriotism and family love” in front of a global audience.