Hollywood's early-summer release schedule in China, the world's second-largest movie market, is falling into place - and the official calendar is looking advantageous for the U.S. studios.
Most of the studios' biggest tentpoles of May and June will open in China day-and-date with North America, according to sources close to China Film Group. In the past, China's film regulators have been known to schedule Hollywood releases just three to four weeks in advance, which occasionally has hampered local marketing campaigns. Having the calendar so soon should be a boon, as some of these projects will have an easier time arranging high-profile Chinese premieres and marketing events featuring the films' busy talent.
Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales will wash ashore in the Middle Kingdom and North America simultaneously on May 26, followed by Warner Bros.' Wonder Woman on June 2.
Transformers: The Last Knight is set to crash into the Chinese marketplace on June 23. The preceding film in the Michael Bay-directed Paramount franchise earned a historic $330 million in China in 2014.
Universal's The Fate of the Furious is currently doing massive business in the Middle Kingdom. The movie scored a record $190 million debut last weekend and cruised past the $200 million mark on Monday, bringing its four-day total to an astonishing $216 million.
Next up for the studios in China is Sony's Smurfs: The Lost Village on April 21, followed by Marvel and Disney's Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 on May 5.