After much speculation, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story has landed a China release date for January 6, 2017, Deadline has confirmed.
This early January slot for the Star Wars spinoff will follow a similar pattern to Disney’s release for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which opened in the Middle Kingdom on January 9 earlier this year. It took just shy of $124M in the market, a feat for a franchise that doesn’t have a long history with Chinese audiences.
Rogue One, which is directed by Gareth Edwards and set before the events of George Lucas’ original 1977 film Star Wars: A New Hope, has the added cachet of featuring two of China’s biggest stars: actor-director Jiang Wen and Hong Kong action star Donnie Yen. The film boasts an international cast including Brits Felicity Jones and Riz Ahmed, Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen and Mexican actor Diego Luna.
Film is scheduled to open three weeks after Universal and Legendary’s Chinese-American historical-monster pic The Great Wall, directed by Zhang Yimou, and one week after Jackie-Chan starrer Railroad Tigers.
Rogue One looks set to have an open playing field ahead of it in China until Tsui Hark’s Journey To The West opens in the Middle Kingdom at the end of January.
Rogue One premieres in Los Angeles on Saturday ahead of its North American debut on December 16. It opens in select international territories on December 14 and 15.