China Halts Release of Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’

China Halts Release of Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’

China Halts Release of Quentin Tarantino’s ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’

The Quentin Tarantino comedy-drama starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt would be the filmmaker's first proper release in China, but a week before Once Upon a Time in Hollywood was set to debut in theaters, regulators abruptly reversed course.

Chinese authorities are rumored to have blocked the release of Once Upon a Time after Shannon Lee, the daughter of martial-arts actor Bruce Lee, contacted Beijing film officials to complain about the way her late father is depicted in the movie.

Whatever the reason behind it, the cancellation is clearly a major blow to Sony's box office prospects, as the studio was banking on the OUATIH's Chinese release to bring the film's $366 million current worldwide totals over $400 million. The film was heavily edited and re-released a month later, by which time pirated versions of the original were already widespread in China. The film contains a scene in which Brad Pitt's stuntman character challenges a ridiculously boastful young Lee to a fight and easily tosses him aside.

Check out IGN's review of Tarantino's film in the video below. This issue isn't related to the political situation in China, of course, but it does come at a tenuous time for China-Hollywood relations.

THR said Bona's equity stake in "Once Upon a Time" was large enough to give the Beijing-based backer participation in its worldwide box office and distribution rights in Greater China. A re-edited version of Django Unchained was pulled from theaters on its opening day, though a subsequent version of the film was eventually released theatrically in China.