Look, I know it’s been nearly three months since Avengers: Endgame hit cinema screens, and you probably thought you’d said farewell to it (well, until it’s released on DVD).
But this is us we’re talking about, and we thought the film was so bloody brilliant we should continue talking about for months on end. Because why not?
So when we heard an Endgame box office record had just been broken by The Farewell, obviously our first port of call was to write about it. So here we are.
You can watch the trailer for The Farewell below:
Indie hit The Farewell was released on Friday (July 12), immediately surpassing Endgame for the biggest per-theatre box office average this year. As reported by Forbes, the Marvel hit previously held the 2019 record at $76,601. Friday changed all that though, with The Farewell earning $87,833 per theatre.
The catch? While The Farewell was only shown across four cinemas, and thus has so far made $351,330, Endgame was shown in 4,662 cinemas and therefore has grossed a massive $357,115,007. Pretty impressive, right?
As well as winning in terms of total revenue, Endgame also set numerous box office records such as becoming the highest grossing film of 2019, and the second-highest grossing film of all time – behind Avatar.
Regardless, topping that record was no easy feat – particularly because The Farewell had a considerably smaller budget than Endgame, as well as a lesser-known cast – and might hint at the film’s upcoming success as it’s released across more cinemas this summer.
The Farewell, directed by Lulu Wang, is based on Wang’s own family story and stars Awkwafina as Billi – a Chinese-born, American-raised writer who is extremely close to but rarely sees her grandma Nai Nai (Shuzhen Zhou).
When the granddaughter finds out Nai Nai has been diagnosed with terminal cancer but her family are planning on keeping the news from her, so as not to break a Chinese societal taboo, Billi feels as though she is deceiving her grandma.
A drama comedy, the film centres upon a family wedding which has been planned as a decoy reason to travel to Nai Nai’s hometown of Changchun, with Billi and her family struggling to say goodbye to their beloved grandma without her realising their true intentions.
Speaking to Refinery29 about the ‘tidal wave’ of positive reactions to the movie, Wang expressed her surprise that this ‘very specific story’ about her family was received in the way it has been.
The director explained:
I didn’t know if people would understand my perspective. I didn’t know if people would understand or relate to the family dynamics. I was just hoping that people wouldn’t hate it, because it’s such a tribute to my family and my grandmother.
Critics have hailed the film, and it has scored a more-than impressive rating of 100 per cent on Rotten Tomatoes – suggesting we should all go and see it.
Well, what’re you waiting for? The Farewell is available to watch in select cinemas now.
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).