Lifestyle & Belief

China pulls 'Django Unchained' from theaters on opening day


Director Quentin Tarantino attends the 61st Venice Film Festival on September 5, 2004 in Venice, Italy.


Franco Origlia

The premiere of Quentin Tarantino’s violent Western movie "Django Unchained" was canceled in China on its opening day, the Associated Press reported.

The violent film about slavery was pulled from Chinese theaters for a "technical problem" after censors had already cleared the film after editing out some of its violence, sex and political content.

A suspension on the day of a film's premiere is unusual.

The Chinese branch of film distributor Sony Pictures has refused to comment. But Steve Elzer, a spokesman for Sony, released a brief statement, The New York Times reported.

“We regret that ‘Django Unchained’ has been removed from theaters and are working with the Chinese authorities to determine whether the film can be rescheduled,” Elzer said.

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Tian Zaixing, general manager of the Beichen Fortune Center movie theater in Kunming told the AP, "We were excited about the film.... We had had high expectations for this film's box office."

Tian said he couldn't recall this happening before. "This means we might not be able to meet our box-office goal for the year," he added.