MUMBAI: Chinese viewers of Cloud Atlas will have to
make do with a version thats missing 40 minutes
from the original shown everywhere else in the world.
to reports in the Chinese media, Cloud Atlas released
in Beijing last Monday night in a 130-minute cut much
shorter than the 169-minute version released worldwide
(including Hong Kong, which sustains a film censorship
system independent from mainland China). It is however
understood that the films directing trio Andy
Wachowski, his sister Lanaand and Germanys Tom
Tykwer were not involved in the re-edit.
to the Chinese press before the films premiere,
they said that they acknowledged the constraints of
releasing the film in China, but they trusted the editing
qualities of the films Chinese co-producers, Dreams
of the Dragon Pictures.
A report in the Shanghai-based Dongfang Daily had reported
that expository sequences and passionate love scenes
were edited out from the film which opens in China on
31 January while gory sequences depicting a character
being shot in the head or another having his throat
the center of this screen adaptation of novelist David
Mitchells multi-stranded Cloud Atlas is a romantic
relationship between budding composer Robert Frobisher
(played by Ben Whishaw) and his Cambridge schoolmate
Rufus Sixsmith (James DArcy) and it is
high likely that scenes from this thread were left off
the Chinese version of the film, as same-sex romances
remain a taboo for Chinese censors.
another scene, set in a 22nd century Korean city called
Neo-Seoul, a human-replicant waitress (played by Chinese
actress Zhou Xun) is shown having sex with her foreman,
an image which could run into problems with the authorities.
Atlas is the second foreign production bowing in China
in a censored version in as many weeks. Skyfall, which
was released in the country last Monday, was released
with a scene of the killing of a Chinese doorman cut
out and subtitles which obscured the on-screen lines
about a prostitution ring in Macau and torture meted
out by Chinese intelligence services.