Watch the trailer for "White Snake 2" coming out in China today

Relatively swift to rebound from the pandemic, moviegoing in China has entered a sluggish patch these past few weeks. Hoping to give the box office a boost is White Snake 2, which opens theatrically in the country today.

The film, whose English title has also been rendered as White Snake 2: The Tribulation of the Green Snake, follows on from 2019's White Snake. The focus shifts from Blanca, the heroine in the original, to her sister, Verta the green-snake demon, who embarks on a magical quest to rescue Blanca. Watch the trailer (without subtitles) below:

The sequel is directed by Amp Wong, one of the co-directors of White Snake, and produced once again at Beijing's Light Chaser Animation Studios. While the original was set up as a co-production with Warner Bros. Far East, the new film is a fully Chinese production.

The story is inspired by the well-known “Legend of the White Snake.” Animated features based on local folklore have proved hugely popular at the Chinese box office lately, the various films about the deity Nezha being among the examples. Light Chaser's own New Gods: Nezha Reborn grossed around $56 million domestically and was picked up by Netflix for the rest of the world.

White Snake grossed around $62 million in China. It was released by GKIDS in North America, where it took $34,730.