A Bollywood film based on the true story of a wrestler’s struggle to challenge gender stereotypes and turn his daughters into world-class fighters has become an unlikely hit in China, the country with the most serious gender imbalance in the world. 


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Since it began its great China run, the box office collections of Dangal have been tracked almost obsessively. The movie was released on 5th May and has set several records in China. The movie has also beaten Aamir's 3 Idiots and PK to become the highest grossing Indian film and becoming the highest-earning non-Hollywood/non-Chinese movie there. This is very surprising.


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In India, Dangal was released in December 2016. It later opened to a record 9,000 screens in China. Last weekend it was recorded that Dangal earned $137.2 million in 24 days in China. This makes Dangal China's biggest non-Hollywood earner ever. With Rs 1,662 crore ($249.8 million) earned till date, the collections match Dangal's Rs 1,623 crore worldwide collection.



Dangal's China business has allowed the movie to wrest back the title of 'highest-earning Indian film ever' from another superhit movie that seemed almost unbeatable - SS Rajamouli's Baahubali 2. 

Aamir's movie is now in line to touch about Rs 1,700 crore in total box office collections.

So why is Dangal is a blockbuster in China?

According to Xinhua news agency, "The ideas of breaking gender roles and reforming education inspired by the film have struck a chord with many Chinese parents."  The movie has sparked online debates about gender in China as well, particularly around the importance of filial piety, another trait that India and China have in common. In China, 118 boys are born for every 100 girls, and the government officials in 2015 reported the gender imbalance among newborns as "the most serious and prolonged" in the world, a direct ramification of the country's strict one-child policy.

Let us go through some of the tweets that prove Dangal has overshadowed Baahubali 2 records and many other Hollywood movies. 



Xiaolai Chen‏ @XiaolaiChen:  @aamir_khan is one of the most special and amazing actor, absolutely loved film #Dangal, so inspiring and moving. 5 stars


苏微橙‏ @kimsunaxi: #Dangal  get almost 900 million RMB in china  until today #摔跤吧爸爸  i am so exicted about this news.fighting !  like this movie!


AAAAAamir‏ @WangYushan0728: #Dangal is expected to exceed nine hundred million RMB in China's box office by 1 pm this afternoon 

苏苏囧‏ @susuazzz8: Day 15 Friday #dangal in China, $5.5M, beat up all newcomers including Hollywood 'Life'.Tomorrow dangal will rule again with 15M$!







Dangal is based on the story of Haryanvi wrestler Mahavir Singh Phogat and his daughters Geeta and Babita, both Commonwealth Games gold medallists. It is an action movie with romantic and colourful song-and-dance sequences that were once signature elements of Bollywood.


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Salman Khan's Tubelight is now expected to be the next blockbuster in China. Kabir Khan was one of the Indian filmmakers who was reportedly set to helm one of the Indian-Chinese co-productions discussed pre-Kung Fu Yoga. 

Tubelight also stars Chinese actress Zhu Zhu. However, while these facts may work in the storyline of Tubelight is based on the China-India War of 1962, that may prove to be a sensitive subject for the Chinese government.