The worlds of sci-fi cinema and athletic competitions don't always go hand-in-hand, but figure skaters Xiaoyu Yu and Hao Zhang changed things up a bit by using music from the Star Wars saga in their routine at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games. During their free skating competition, the athletes performed to "Duel of the Fates" from The Phantom Menace and "Luke and Leia" from the original trilogy.
Following the 2014 Olympic Games, the International Skating Committee updated regulations about musical selections, allowing athletes to select songs with lyrics. "Duel of the Fates" utilizes vocalizations, but the lyrical content doesn't compare to other athletes' selections this year, like Ed Sheeran, Coldplay or Simon & Garfunkel.
Yu and Zhang are representing China at the Olympic Games, which makes their selections of Star Wars music surprising, given the saga's lack of success in the country.
The original series of films didn't make their way to China until the '90s and never really gained much steam with audiences.
Chen Tao, who runs a Chinese Star Wars fan forum, cites that, given its lack of exposure with audiences in the country, the discovery that The Last Jedi was the eighth film in the series makes it feel impossible to catch up on the entire saga, dismaying the casual fan from seeing the latest installment.
The Force Awakens opened to more than $50 million in 2015, while Rogue One opened to $30 million. Not only did The Last Jedi fail to come close to The Force Awakens' performance in China, it fell short of Rogue One, only taking in $28 million.
“For a lot of fans, the story of Rogue One made us think of our own country’s revolutionary history,” Tao pointed out. “A lot of characters in it were just like the Communist Party members who sacrificed themselves for the revolution.”
In the film's third weekend of release, it had dropped more than 92% at the box office. Reception to the saga was so disappointing that, with the upcoming Han Solo spinoff, the film will drop the Star Wars reference in its title, changing instead to "Ranger Solo."
You can see the amazing performance at NBC's website.
Solo: A Star Wars Story will land in theaters on May 25.
[H/T The Hollywood Reporter]