Sci-fi movies and athletic events are quite an unusual pair. However, figure skaters Xiaoyu Yu and Hao Zhang pepped things up a little by using the soundtrack from the Star Wars in their routine at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games. During the free skating event, the athletes performed to “Duel of the Fates” from the movie The Phantom Menace and “Luke and Leia” from the original Star Wars trilogy. After the 2014 Olympics, the international skating Committee had revamped the rules related to the selection of music and permitted athletes to choose songs that had lyrics. “Duel of the Fates” exploits vocals, but, the lyrical element is not comparable to what the other athletes selected this year, such as Ed Sheeran, Coldplay or Simon & Garfunkel.
Yu and Zhang are participating for China at the Olympic Games, which is quite surprising considering the fact that they selected Star Wars music, despite the saga’s poor performance in China.
While the original trilogy wasn’t released in China until the 1990s and never found favor with audiences.
Chen Tao, manages a Chinese Star Wars fan forum, and he says that considering its lack of visibility to the Chinese audiences, the fact that The Last Jedi was the eighth episode of the Star Wars makes it nearly impossible to familiarize with the whole Star Wars saga, which irks the casual movie lover about the latest film.
The Force Awakens had a $50 million plus opening in 2015, whereas Rogue One opened to $30 million. However, The Last Jedi failed to be in the vicinity of The Force Awakens’ success in China, and in fact, it failed to match even Rogue One by opening to only $28 million. “For a lot of fans, the story of Rogue One made us think of our own country’s revolutionary history,” Tao explained. “A lot of characters in it were just like the Communist Party members who sacrificed themselves for the revolution.”
In the third weekend of its cinematic run, the movie had gone down by over 92% at the box office. The film had such a disappointing reception that, in the wake of the upcoming Han Solo movie, the film will not even feature the Star Wars reference in its title, and will rather be called “Ranger Solo” in China.
You can watch the incredible performance by the two figure skaters at NBC’s website.
Solo: A Star Wars Story releases in theaters on May 25.