Disney’s Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales and Sony’s Life have both scored May release dates in China.
Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales will sail into the Middle Kingdom on Friday, May 26 in a day-and-date release with North America.
Earlier Chinese media reports had put Pirates‘ release on Tuesday, May 30, four days after it opens in North America, but an apparent last-minute change by film officials has brought it forward.
Disney confirmed the day-and-date release date on its official Weibo account on Wednesday morning. In a rare move, the company also announced that the Pirates global premiere will be held on May 11 at the Shanghai Disney Resort, with stars Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, Geoffrey Rush, Javier Bardem, and others in attendance.
The resort has become an obligatory stop for stars of Disney films since it opened in June 2016, but this marks the first time it has held host to a world premiere.
The new slot puts the film two days before the beginning of China’s Dragon Boat Festival celebrations, a three-day public holiday that runs May 28-30 this year. The film looks set to have a wide release with screenings in 2D, 3D, IMAX, and China Film Giant Screen.
Directed by Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg, the film marks the third time the franchise has received a China release, out of five films.
A decade ago, Pirates Of The Caribbean: At World’s End was the first of the series to show in China and ended up earning RMB 125 million (US$18.1 million). In 2011, Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides pulled in RMB 476 million ($69 million).
Further priming local audiences, all of the previous installments in the franchise screened in the out of competition section at this year’s Beijing International Film Festival last week.
Meanwhile, Columbia Pictures-Sony’s Life has scored a Friday, May 19 — a week before Pirates arrives. The Chinese release comes eight weeks after the film came out in North America on March 24. It will feature on 2D and China Film Giant Screens.
Directed by Daniel Espinosa and starring Ryan Reynolds and Jake Gyllenhaal, the science fiction horror film has already grossed $73.3 million at the box office globally.
Editor’s note: A previous version of this article said Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales would open in China on May 30, four days after it opens in North America.