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Zhang Yimou says 'Great Wall' story may have been too weak

Associated Press logo Associated Press 5/10/2017

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese director Zhang Yimou says the disappointing U.S. performance of the biggest budget China-U.S. co-production to date, "The Great Wall," may have been down to a weak story.

Nevertheless, Zhang called the fantasy epic a "first step" in such collaborations and hoped filmmakers wouldn't be put off.

He told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the film's cast was good and star Matt Damon was "splendid." In addition to possible weakness in the story, Zhang said he and others behind the film may simply have not done a "good job."

Producers had hoped the movie with a $150 million production budget could buck the trend of China-U.S. co-productions failing to make a splash in both countries. In China, it pulled in $171 million. In the U.S. it made $45 million.

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