China Says No More Movies And TV Shows About Time Travel

from the don't-even-think-about-it dept

It’s no secret that time travel stories in movies and TV are a bit cliche at this point, but that doesn’t stop people from using them repeatedly. It’s just such an easy plot device. But, don’t expect to see much more of it in China. Ima Fish alerts us to the news that the General Bureau of Radio, Film and Television in China has announced that time travel stories are no longer allowed on TV or in movies. Apparently, such stories are “disrespectful to history” and that many of the “stories are totally made up.” Apparently, the General Bureau of Radio, Film and Television in China is unfamiliar with the definition of fiction.

It sounds like time travel stories had become especially popular in Chinese media, and it sounds like someone at the Bureau just got sick of it. Along similar lines, the Bureau has apparently also declared that no more TV/movie versions shall be made of “the four great classical novels of China.” Honestly, it really feels like someone (or some people) involved in this Bureau just got sick of seeing similar shows and decided to issue a ban.

Of course, the real question is how long will it take for people in China to create a video that involves going back in time to restock the General Bureau of Radio, Film and Television with people who seem less silly?

Filed Under: , , , ,

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “China Says No More Movies And TV Shows About Time Travel”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment
57 Comments
weneedhelp (profile) says:

Re: the four great classical novels of China

“I wish they would do they same in the US with all the stupid teen vampire TV shows and Movies.”

And stupid no talent whores that get reality shows too.
And all those stupid high school shows where everyone is gay or on the verge of sex.
And all those stupid CSI-in-every-flavor shows.

Anonymous Coward says:

“Along similar lines, the Bureau has apparently also declared that no more TV/movie versions shall be made of “the four great classical novels of China.””

Hum…I don’t know all four of them, but I assume the “Romance of the Three Kingdoms” and “Water Margin” are among them. The Government has every motivation to supress these classics, because some people might read them and start having some crazy ideas. Crazy ideas that involve rebellions and such.

PS: I highly recommend reading about those two stories. They are actually very good.

xs (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Not everything in China is related to “crazy ideas”, you know. The true motivation to ban further remake is because there’re 3 or 4 remakes in the last few years on the “Dream of Red Chamber” alone. And each one is a worse adaptation than the one before to boot. There are suspicion that those productions are actually money laundering efforts.

wallow-T says:

On movie versions of the Classical Novels of China: the shortened-for-USA-theaters version of John Woo’s “Red Cliff” was utterly dazzling, if you like historical war movies. I still have not gotten to the 5-hour complete DVD version, dang it. IIRC, “Red Cliff” was made with the complete cooperation of the Chinese government, which furnished Chinese Army resources for set building and for extras.

“Red Cliff” is drawn from a small chunk of “Romance of the Three Kingdoms.”

crade (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Red Cliff is actually inspired by the (historical documents) and is quite a bit different from The Romance of the Three Kindoms. In Romance, Zhou Yu is pretty much a villain, and in Red Cliff he’s like the main hero. Personally I thought the full lenght movies (red cliff 1 + 2) are way better than the shortened version since they actually made sense 🙂

The Devil's Coachman (profile) says:

Probably a bunch of doddering old coots behind this.

Idiotic, reactionary crap from some of the many pants-crapping, three-toothed, drooling morons in the Chinese government are an everyday occurrence, and there won’t be any change in that for a long, long time. I’m sure most of them still venerate the little red book like the bible thumpers do theirs. This isn’t even news.

xs (profile) says:

Re: Someone jumped the gun with wrong translation

Yep. What were stopped was only remake of the 4 classics. And that’s only with “no more remake in the short term”, not a complete ban. For time travel shows, it’s only “Not encouraged”, because of the distortion of historical fact, and lack of artistic value. Cloning of western shows are also only limited, but not banned, with an aim to have original shows comprising 60% of content.

Ben says:

Chinese time travel/history?

“disrespectful to history”

Most of China’s history is made up, in an advertisement for a Chinese opera on local TV they began with the usual statement about 5000 years of history! Hard to have a history that goes back 5000 years when your written language only goes back 3000 years (please don’t mention “oracle bones”)http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_language. Chinese History is about as old as Greek history (except that Greek history hasn’t been heavily re-written). Just as China tries to claim that the “great-wall” is 2000 years old when only a tamped earth wall existed prior to 220 AD, but they always show the 15th century section when making these claims. The Chinese also claim to have “invented” the crossbow, regardless of the fact that crossbows existed everywhere, and despite the absurd bragging the Romans used crossbows, Alexander used crossbows. The Persians used crossbows earlier than the Chinese. The only things that the Chinese invented were silk, fireworks and propaganda.

Ben says:

Chinese time travel/history?

“disrespectful to history”

Most of China’s history is made up, in an advertisement for a Chinese opera on local TV they began with the usual statement about 5000 years of history! Hard to have a history that goes back 5000 years when your written language only goes back 3000 years (please don’t mention “oracle bones”)http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_language. Chinese History is about as old as Greek history (except that Greek history hasn’t been heavily re-written). Just as China tries to claim that the “great-wall” is 2000 years old when only a tamped earth wall existed prior to 220 AD, but they always show the 15th century section when making these claims. The Chinese also claim to have “invented” the crossbow, regardless of the fact that crossbows existed everywhere, and despite the absurd bragging the Romans used crossbows, Alexander used crossbows. The Persians used crossbows earlier than the Chinese. The only things that the Chinese invented were silk, fireworks and propaganda.

mirradric says:

From my reading of the qq article

From what I’ve read in the article it’s more of a statement that they do not advocate and will not approve broadcasting certain categories/genres of shows during prime time. The categories mentioned are time travel, imitations/remakes/clones of foreign (to china, like hollywood) productions and remakes of the 4 classics.The rational is that there are simply too many of these after these genres gained popularity and many are of low quality in terms of plot and production.
They do not encourage wholesale imitation/remake of foreign films but hope that they can contain more than 60% of original material. Time travel films were specifically mentioned as an example of poor plots and weak devices.
More importantly, the article makes no mention of a ban. To the contrary, it mentions that some of the films have been approved for broadcast in non-prime time slots creating a new “midnight prime time” although the bureau does not encourage submitting films for midnight slots just to get approval.

dan (user link) says:

“putting an original spin on history is kind of the point of a time travel movie”

Its also the point in communist governments, the reason they ban stuff like this may not be as “silly” as we think. The forces behind these governments know that the key to control of humans lies in perception and they have indeed rewritten history and do not want anyone else changing the perceptions they have put out themselves.

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...
Loading...