One of the newest additions to China Film Group lot outside Bejing is a North African streetscape built for megahit action film Wolf Warrior II (战狼2). In the 2017 film, a former elite special ops soldier saves a group of Chinese nationals caught up in a rebel attack in an unnamed African country. The film is one of a series of recent releases that highlight contemporary China’s global reach. As Evan Osnos wrote in The New Yorker, “Wolf Warrior II captures a new, muscular iteration of China’s self-narrative, much as Rambo’s heroics expressed the swagger of the Reagan era.” It also became the highest grossing Chinese film of all time.
The set was later recycled for the less-acclaimed China Salesman, with Mike Tyson and Steven Seagal. In the film, foreign companies compete for a telecom contract with a north African country coming out of a civil war. While the corrupt Western company seeks to control the network for its own gain, the Chinese company offers to share its source code and create an open platform. Though the proceedings are regularly interrupted by guns, tanks, bazookas, and an awkward fight scene between Segal and Tyson.