UPDATE: 9:20 AM: Just two days after Disney announced that Iron Man 3 would open in China on the same day as its North American release May 3, the date has changed. The sequel from the studio and Marvel Studios will now open there May 1 to capitalize on the final day of the May Day holiday.
PREVIOUSLY, WEDNESDAY AM: This is the date Disney and Marvel Studios were eyeing all along for the pic, but Disney now has set it in stone. It’s now day-and-date with its U.S. release. Disney, Marvel and China-based producer-distributor DMG Entertainment have pulled out all the stops to promote Iron Man 3 in China, where it was partially shot, complete with a lavish 90-minute TV special about the movie that premiered over the weekend on national TV and will air in repeats until its release. The cast also includes Chinese stars Wang Xueqi and Fan Bing Bing. The release in China could mark a rebound for U.S. films in the territory: Last year, four foreign films were responsible for 56% of total sales in the first quarter, but in 2013 the only Hollywood pictures to punch above 300M yuan ($48.5M) were Skyfall and The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, according to reports. They were followed by A Good Day To Die Hard, Cloud Atlas and Resident Evil: Retribution.