Despicable Me 2 banned in mainland China
The comical characters of the hit animated film will not be allowed in mainland theatres
The little yellow minions of Despicable Me 2 will not be making an official appearance on the mainland.
Ironically, Despicable Me 2 was the subject of a Beijing Youth Daily article on July 23 that took notice of the film’s US box office success and said that it was “hopeful” for the film’s chances of being released in mainland cinemas. This stamp of approval from state media seems to have done little good, and Chinese netizens were quick to take to the internet to complain about the film’s ban.
“Why would the movie not be suitable for mainland children?” one puzzled commentator wrote on Sina Weibo. “The main character is a positive father figure and the movie is full of good messages.”
Most netizens wrote that because of the film’s theatre ban, they would now be forced to “download the movie with subtitles” or purchase a bootleg copy. Others were appreciative of the Chinese government for striving to promote domestic films, but still disappointed that the yellow “minions” that serve as the Despicable Me mascots would be confined to appearances in pirated movie shops and on the Chinese internet.
Despicable Me 2, which has grossed over seven million dollars in Hong Kong, is only the latest in a long list of foreign films banned from the mainland.The first Despicable Me was also denied entry into China, and another animated film, Dreamworks’ The Croods, ended its theatre run two weeks early, allegedly because it was bringing in more income than domestic animated movies. China has aggressively promoted its local animation in the last few years, but profits remain slow, with Chinese animated films only contributing about seven per cent to China’s total box office revenue in 2012.