In recent history a number of films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe had missed out on a Chinese theatrical release. For nearly three years films like Black Widow, Spider-Man: No Way Home, The Eternals, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and Thor: Love & Thunder were all unofficially “banned” from release.
These films may have been banned for political reasons or things that the actors in the films said, like Shang-Chi‘s lead actor, Simu Liu, had previously made anti-CCP comments in an old interview. Same with The Eternals director Chloé Zhao over anti-CCP comments in 2013.
There was also an instance where China apparently requested that Marvel/SONY remove/censor the Statue of Liberty in Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Some also believed censorship of LGBTQ+ content as a handful of these films contain brief scenes and comments of that nature.
But it appears that the “ban” on Marvel movies in China may be over, at least for now. Both Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania are set for a Chinese theatrical release this February. Black Panther 2 will release on February 7th and Ant-Man 3 on February 17th.
No official reason has been given as to why the ban has been lifted, but perhaps the release of Avatar: The Way of Water could have contributed to the decision. The Avatar sequel has made nearly $200 Million since its release, and with lessening COVID-19 restrictions more people ay want to go out to see films. So where do you get movies from? Hollywood of course.
Now this could also be temporary as China has been known to change their minds in the blink of an eye, so we could see another “ban” in the future. Only time will tell.
What do you think? Is it a good thing that China is releasing Marvel movies again?
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