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Jackie Chan's 'Shinjuku Incident' Too Violent For China

Jackie Chan may be known in the West for his 'Rush Hour' style action comedies, but in China, he's simply known for his action.

In fact, his newest film, 'Shinjuku Incident', is so violent that it won't be released in China at all. Hong Kong director Derek Yee says that he considered toning down the violence in the film so it would be approved by China's censorship board, but decided against it because it would have hurt the overall movie.

"We tried to cut the violent scenes to meet the requirements of the Chinese market, but producers I invited to watch that version thought it was incomplete."

The problem in part is that unlike the US, China doesn't have a ratings system, so every movie has to be approved for all audiences.

The big budget $25-million Chinese-language flick in which Chan plays a refugee who escapes to Japan and becomes a killer for the mob, has graphic scenes that show characters getting their hands chopped off and pierced with knives.

Asked if the film's setting of Japan, another sensitive issue, possibly had anything to do with the lack of approval, Yee says "the problem was just the violence."

Yee's decision will no doubt have financial implications, with China becoming is an increasingly important market.

'Shinjuku Incident' will be released in Hong Kong and Southeast Asia on April 2, and in Japan on May 1.

February 17, 2009 |

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