While legions of screaming girls are going crazy for New Moon abroad, which opened to record box office numbers in the United States, here in China, we’re only just getting the chance to see Twilight on the big screen.
The movie about a girl and her shiny vampires is “both a late and surprise entry” at the Chinese box office, which has shunned supernatural content and violence – and interspecies romance? – for years, according to Hollywood Reporter. Perhaps the amazing book sales (the Top 30 list for China has had at least one of the four Twilight books on it for the past 10 months) helped convince censors that there was money to be made. Despite a lack of vampires in Chinese literary tradition (Chinese vampires, or 僵尸 jiangshi, are more like zombies), the series has somehow struck a chord with women here.
According to Christian Science Monitor, Chinese girls – teenagers, middle schoolers, office ladies – just can’t resist the siren call (or semi-constipated look) of Edward Cullen:
On Douban, a popular website for comments on books and movies, 67,949 fans have left messages about “Twilight.”
“Twilight” is a complete and idealistic portrayal of the most beautiful kind of love that can exist in a woman’s heart” wrote one, signing her post “Arwen.”
“I would say over 60 percent of the readers are middle school and high school girls” says Mr. Chang. “Edward [Cullen] is a vampire, he is dangerous. Girls love to fall in love with this kind of dangerous boyfriend.”
Gag. There’s only one way we’ll be watching this movie… and that’s with Rifftracks.