While I was in China, a large number of students that I spoke with excitedly asked me if I had seen the movie “Evader”. Each one of them described to me that it was not only a perfect work, nothing short of a masterpiece, but that it was also the current best selling movie in the U.S. Having never heard of this “Evader”, I began to suspect that many of these poor students had been duped into believing that a domestically produced film was in fact American. I was unable to find a single student who had a bad opinion of any of the American movies that they had seen, as figured that simply tagging a film as American-made would be enough to make it a best seller. Wrong.
The story did not change once I got to Leshan, as my host family’s nephew soon asked me if I had seen the legendary “Evader”. His eyes lit up as he described the movie, and it was clear that it was the greatest thing he had ever watched, but for some reason or other (And this was the case with everyone), he was unable to give me any sort of plot summary for the film. Instead, he focused his entire description on how the movie made him feel, and how it was sure to remain a classic for years to come. Perfection.
One evening, having decided to go for a walk in a local park and to see the city at night, we passed the front of a large movie theater, at which point I saw a sign for Avatar. Knowing that my host-nephew was painfully eager for any details of what was current and popular in the States, I pointed to the banner. Immediately, his eyebrows went up, a grin came out, and he said “yes, you see, Evader”
This morning, I read an an article from the New York Times site, detailing an announcement made by the bureau responsible for moderating the Chinese film industry. Apparently, the ever sucessful “Avatar” is soon to be removed from any theater that is not able to display the movie in 3-D. Why you ask? More censorship? Resentment toward the possible underlying message about the environment? The decision comes simply from the a financial standpoint. The film is doing too well
Avatar has taken China by storm, quickly becoming the top selling movie of all time within the PRC, finally ending the long running dynasty known as Titanic. With the soon to be released domestic production “Confucius”, a documentary on the beloved figurehead of Chinese philosophy, it appears that the film industry in China worries (and not without reason) that a western production will steal the revenue from their own market. I figure that this is fair enough. Read the below article for the finer details.