Although Men In Black 3 somehow narrowly escaped China's stringent laws banishing movies that feature time-travel plots—to say nothing of its implication that many famous historical figures were really aliens, which would seem to run counter to China's similar ban on "casually made-up myths" that do not involve crying ghosts and dragon people—the nation's State Administration of Film, Television, and Radio reportedly drew the line at a handful of MIB moments set in New York's Chinatown. The Telegraph reports that some 13 minutes of the film have now been excised in order to placate the nation where all the money is, including one scene set in a Chinese restaurant staffed by aliens in disguise, and another where Will Smith erases the memories of a group of Chinese bystanders. It is, indeed, the most glaring example of Hollywood films kowtowing to Chinese censorship since the last one.
The former scene, of course, was presumably judged to "cast China in a bad light" in much the same way that Chow Yun-fat's character was cut from Pirates Of The Caribbean: At World's End, as Chinese people are definitely neither ruthless pirates nor secretly aliens, and any suggestion otherwise is merely Western propaganda. Meanwhile, the latter scene—as speculated by the China Southern Daily—may have been cut because "it could be viewed as a comment on China's censorship of the Internet." And granted, that sounds like a bit of a stretch, but it becomes pretty clear after viewing the scene below. As you'll see, Smith prevents Chinese people from ogling a giant, writhing, tentacled fish—something that, in our estimation, accounts for 75 percent of all Chinese Internet viewing. [via Los Angeles Times]
Send your Newswire tips to firstname.lastname@example.org