Netflix has acquired the streaming rights to Frant Gwo’s “The Wandering Earth,” the world’s highest-grossing film so far this year.
The sci-fi adventure exceeded 3.8 billion yuan ($565 million) in 14 days since its opening on Feb. 5, according to ticketing platform Maoyan.
The movie is based on a 2000 novella of the same title by Liu Cixin, regarded as the “godfather of Chinese sci-fi.” He is also the first Asian novelist to win the Hugo Award for his 2008 work “The Three-Body Problem.”
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“The Wandering Earth” follows a United Earth Government embarking on a rescue mission to save the Earth from an aging sun, which happens to be on the verge of becoming a red giant and expanding to a size that devours the planet.
The goal is to propel Earth into the orbit of another solar system, the Alpha Centauri system, to preserve the human species.
Gwo directed and wrote the film, which stars Qu Chuxiao, Wu Jing, Li Guangjie, Ng Man-Tat and Zhao Jinmai. Netflix will translate it into 28 languages.
“Audiences from over 190 countries will soon meet ‘The Wandering Earth’ on Netflix. I am glad that our movie can reach to people from different parts of the world,” Gwo said. “This is a movie created for the Chinese audience around the world, and it has been positively received since its premiere, we are very excited about it.”
According to Netflix, the film took two years in post-production and special effects work.
It underwent more than 3,000 conceptual designs, featured over 10,000 unique props and employed more than 2,000 special effects shots, including “a substantial amount” of computer graphics shots.
“Netflix is committed to providing entertainment lovers with access to a wide variety of global content,” said Jerry Zhang, content acquisition manager at Netflix. “With its high-quality production and story-telling, we believe that ‘The Wandering Earth’ will be loved by sci-fi fans around the world.”
The film landed on Netflix in Singapore on February 21. No other release dates have been confirmed.