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    All Your Movie Are Belong to China

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    Reed Benson

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    All Your Movie Are Belong to China

    Post  Reed Benson on January 17th 2017, 8:28 pm

    So, we all know that China is a big market for Hollywood, right? So much so that they're changing a lot of movies to suit the Chinese audience's censors' tastes in hopes of filling as many as the 30-something spots open for foreign films to hit Chinese theaters per year. A lot of studios are also partnering with Chinese studios so that their films can get around the foreign label and be more likely to get released.

    This goes back at least to The Dark Knight, which the studio decided not to release in China because it features a Chinese character as a villain. More recently, the Ancient One in Dr. Strange was allegedly changed from a Tibetan man to a white woman because of sensitivities to China's position on Tibet.

    Here are some informative videos on the subject (hope you like Transformers clips):







    P.S., I apologize is this has been covered on the forum before I arrived. Embarassed


    Last edited by Reed Benson on January 18th 2017, 6:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Paeter
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    Re: All Your Movie Are Belong to China

    Post  Paeter on January 18th 2017, 10:09 am

    Really interesting stuff!
    Do the Chinese censors dislike nudity in films? That could be a plus!

    Ultimately, I think the market will kind of speak for itself. Most movies that favor China in production turn out to be movies I don't want to see anyway.

    I'm not super concerned with a lack of the US government being shown in a positive light. Would be a shame to have fewer movies honoring our men and women in uniform, but beyond that I think its wise keep some cautious skepticism about our government. I DO hope that filmmakers will not eventually start painting communism or socialism in a positive light, although I think that's already begun a bit, especially in some smaller movies.



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    Reed Benson

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    Re: All Your Movie Are Belong to China

    Post  Reed Benson on January 18th 2017, 7:07 pm

    Paeter wrote:Really interesting stuff!
    Do the Chinese censors dislike nudity in films? That could be a plus!

    Movies in China aren't rated, so nudity never makes it into the theaters. However, I don't think nudity or sex scenes alone will disqualify a movie from getting a Chinese release unless they take up a significant portion of the film. Small amounts of nudity can be edited out.

    For example, when I saw The Expendables in China, the shot at the end where Eric Roberts is impaled by a knife was edited (making that sequence really confusing as a result; I didn't know what had actually happened until I went back to the U.S. and saw it on DVD). So, if they can edit violence like that, they can edit nudity. But a movie like Deadpool won't get released.


    I'm not super concerned with a lack of the US government being shown in a positive light. Would be a shame to have fewer movies honoring our men and women in uniform, but beyond that I think it's wise [to] keep some cautious skepticism about our government.


    I'm with you on that. I'm kind of surprised that Captain America is so popular over here, but it may be because he embodies patriotism in general, and China really likes pushing patriotism (to China, though their form of patriotism is more like nationalism). His behavior in Civil War does see him going against the U.S. government, but the funny thing is, if Civil War were a Chinese movie with Chinese super heroes operating in China, the Captain America character would totally have been presented as the villain, and the Iron Man character would be the valiant, selfless hero.

    I DO hope that filmmakers will not eventually start painting communism or socialism in a positive light, although I think that's already begun a bit, especially in some smaller movies.

    That's interesting. I hadn't noticed, but maybe I haven't seen those movies. Do you have any examples?
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    Re: All Your Movie Are Belong to China

    Post  Paeter on January 19th 2017, 10:43 am

    An example of socialism/communism portrayed positively would be Trumbo, the movie about the screenwriter who was blacklisted for being either a socialist or a communist. Can't remember which. He's the beaten up hero of the story (and I agree that he was horribly mistreated) but is also given a voice in at least one scene to explain his view, which emphasizes a desire for big government and government enforced equalizing of living standards.

    That's probably the strongest example I know of. Others would just be movies with a strong liberal or social justice agenda that go beyond stirring up compassion and suggest legislation and/or taxing as the solution. I can't think of one off the top of my head, but they are usually courtroom type dramas, or dramas based on true stories of the downtrodden.


    As for China editing movies and the nudity issue, my (probably unrealistic) hope would be, not that China edits nudity out, but that the US studios would begin self-filtering nudity out of films from the get go in hopes of reaching a wider audience.


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    Re: All Your Movie Are Belong to China

    Post  Reed Benson on January 20th 2017, 9:19 pm

    Paeter wrote:An example of socialism/communism portrayed positively would be Trumbo, the movie about the screenwriter who was blacklisted for being either a socialist or a communist. Can't remember which. He's the beaten up hero of the story (and I agree that he was horribly mistreated) but is also given a voice in at least one scene to explain his view, which emphasizes a desire for big government and government enforced equalizing of living standards.

    That's probably the strongest example I know of. Others would just be movies with a strong liberal or social justice agenda that go beyond stirring up compassion and suggest legislation and/or taxing as the solution. I can't think of one off the top of my head, but they are usually courtroom type dramas, or dramas based on true stories of the downtrodden.

    I see. I'm going to keep my eye out for stuff like that in the independent movies I find on places like Netflix.

    As for China editing movies and the nudity issue, my (probably unrealistic) hope would be, not that China edits nudity out, but that the US studios would begin self-filtering nudity out of films from the get go in hopes of reaching a wider audience.

    I don't like the idea of filmmakers compromising their artistic vision for the sake of sales, but I do recognize that a lot of nudity is included for the sake of sales in the first place, so I'm all for having less of that. And the artists who insist that nudity and sex scenes are integral to their work are probably not the sort that concern themselves with marketing to mass audiences.

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