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Web China: China's comedy box-office hit stirs debate


16:24, December 27, 2012

BEIJING, Dec. 26 (Xinhua) -- A low-budget comedy has become the box office hit of the year on the Chinese mainland, leaving a heavily-funded domestic blockbuster trailing.

"Lost in Thailand", which was produced for only 30 million yuan (4.8million U.S. dollars), earned 700 million yuan (112 million U.S. dollars) up until Christmas Eve, after debuting on Dec. 12.

The movie tells the story of two company managers scrambling to obtain contract authorization from the company's biggest shareholder. Hilarity follows when the duo travel to Thailand to search for the secluded shareholder.

However, the blockbuster "Back to 1942", which cost 200 million yuan and directed by Chinese director Feng Xiaogang, only earned 400 million yuan, far off the one billion yuan that was predicted.

The film focuses on the drought in that year which killed three million people in Henan Province and left millions as refugees. Feng spent more than ten years to research and make the movie.

Feng expressed his anger online after his movie failed to meet expectations at the box-office.

"I'm not proud of my nation anymore." Feng posted on, China's Twitter-like microblog service.

Some in the Chinese media were also critical. The People's Daily said, "Facing the heavy and painful theme of 'Back to 1942', audiences chose to enjoy a modern comedy. We need a fast food culture, but we also need stories to remind us of the hard times."

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