Sold as China’s most expensive movie ever made, the $110+ million fantasy epic “Asura” opened late last week and earned just $7.1 million over its opening weekend.
As a result the film’s producers, including Jack Ma’s Alibaba Pictures, decided to take desperate action and pulled the movie from cinemas at 10pm on Sunday night.
According to THR, the statement announcing the pulling of the film offered no explanation for the unprecedented move, but a Zhenjian Film rep says the company plans to make some changes to the film and release it again.
Lei Wu stars as a young boy who must embark on an epic journey to save Asura, a godly dimension of pure desire, after it is threatened by a coup from a lower kingdom. Tony Ka Fai Leung and Carina Lau also star.
Asura’s producers are also reportedly alleging they were targeted by a particularly aggressive smear campaign of bad reviews with a large number posted by suspicious accounts immediately after the film’s release.