Media and Advertising

Tom Cruise tarnishes Shanghai's image?

Xinhua reports on Mission Impossible III and Shanghai's hypersensitivity:

Cruise's "Mission: Impossible III" may find it impossible to enter China market

The much-anticipated film "Mission: Impossible III" may be kept out of China for "tarnishing the image of Shanghai," Shanghai-based newspaper Xinmin Evening News reported over the weekend.

With 20 percent of its scenes shot in China, the action-thriller starring Tom Cruise has been expected to achieve box office success here.

Cruise shot part of the film in Shanghai last year, and his Shanghai press conference attracted nearly 100 reporters from different media.

The film could well have offended the Shanghai authorities. In the film, when Cruise stepped into the metropolis, he saw rags and underwear drying outdoors in side streets, rather than views of Shanghai's shining skyscrapers. Shanghai's image was further tarnished by the film's awkward and slow-moving "Shanghai police," according to the Xinmin Evening News.

Industry insiders told the Xinmin Evening News the authorities were yet to make a decision on allowing the film into the mainland. The film's import has been delayed indefinitely, industry insiders said, adding that the ban was probably caused by the "negative Shanghai image."

There are currently 14 Comments for Tom Cruise tarnishes Shanghai's image?.

Comments on Tom Cruise tarnishes Shanghai's image?

Every city has its poor parts of the town.

Why would a villian hold a hostage at a 5-star hotel, of course it would be in the slums.

The hostage was held in a neighborhood "family planning" clinic, where pro-single child propaganda banners were still on the walls.

In communist China... er, never mind. Let's just say that the irony here is that the ban will promote an even greater "negative Shanghai image" abroad.

I saw the movie and all it did was make me pine for Shanghai. The filming of the city was incredible. The shots of Pudong and an old section of the city were excellent and inviting. The Chinese authorities are dead wrong on this.

How strange for the ban to be in China, because if anyone would know what Shanghai REALLY looks like - it would be the Chinese citizens - of which the film is banned. Therefore, China must ban the rest of the world from the movie if it does not want to "look bad". My guess is that somebody should have paid that "extra $$$" when they had the chance.

This is such a puff piece, come on Danwei. I thought you are meant to see through the garbage on Xinhua.

a) its not up to the Shanghai authorities

b) When was the original decision due?

c) Which media company representing the film has APPLIED for release of the film?

d) Is the above even journalism?

I know a bit about the MI3 shoot in Shanghai. Usually foreign films in China have to go into uncomfortable co-productions with local studios. But MI3 was such a bloomin' big production that they just brought in EVERYONE they needed from LA - from caterers to set runners. I'm sure they had to pay someone handsomely for this privilege..would I be cynical to think that this someone was in Beijing, thus some folks in Shanghai feel a bit left out, hence the piece in Xinmin?

Either that or it's just the usual civic sensitivity mixed with utter idiocy...

Why are the Chinese people so insecure about themselves and so low on self-esteem??? It seems like anything and everything offends them, regardless of how insignificant and/or benign it is. These people need to get some confidence.

One can see laundry airing outdoors on streets around the world, including some of the more glamorous ones. Chinese can't handle anything less than fake representations of reality.

All the dominator in China would follow one rule,not matter present or past age: I AM ALWAYS RIGHT. If lost this rule, then he lost the justification for govern.

There is no such a thing of tarnishing Shanghai's image. That is what Shanghai looks like. If the authorities donot happy with that then stop drying rags and underwears outdoors in side streets.

In Vancouver, I see people hang drying their underwear and bra at their home back yard all the time.

It is all the "low self-esteem", believe me. Just look Taiwan and Hong Kong Chinese, they never ban foreign movies for some ridiculously lame reasons.(well, maybe not Taiwan)

Well, I think its the real issue is that the chinese feel the western world sees them as straw-hat wearing farmers. the last scene in the movie(where Tom Cruise saves his wife) was shot in a sightseeing village(one thats preserved like the amish country). Tomb-raider had a similar scene where they portray shanghai as an area with broke down shacks and junk boats. In Indiana Jones, the city was portrayed exactly the same(should be the 40's shanghai in the movie), as if it has not progressed in the past 60yrs. The image of the city was just butchered in the movie. If i didn't know any better, I would've thought the city was full of rivers and lil fishing boats full of ragged clothed farmers, far from the 100million dollar(usd) condominium neighborhood that actually took place. How would you feel if people think your home city is like a backward fishing village.

Leon makes a good point, Western films often do portray China with an inaccuracy that borders on painful. I get annoyed too when I see modern Shanghai depicted as some kitsch Chinatown with extras speaking Cantonese (or gibberish). Passing off a Disneyland like Zhouzhuang as Shanghai is almost as bad. What upsets the censors, apparently, is that MI3 depicts Shanghai too accurately. Plenty of Shanghainese are proud of the city as it is, drying skivvies and all; I just wish the authorities could be so too.

Funny seeing all the white kids comment on "being offended"

China Media Timeline
Major media events over the last three decades
Danwei Model Workers
The latest recommended blogs and new media
laomo2010x80.jpg
From 2008
Front Page of the Day
A different newspaper every weekday
From the Vault
Classic Danwei posts
+ Culture and corporate propaganda in Soho Xiaobao (2007.11): Mid-2007 issues of Soho Xiaobao (SOHO小报), illustrating the complicated identity of in-house magazines run by real estate companies.
+ Internet executives complain about excessive Net censorship (2010.03): Internet executives complain about excessive Net censorship at an officially sanctioned meeting in Shenzhen.
+ Crowd-sourced cheating on the 2010 gaokao (2010.06): A student in Sichuan seeks help with the ancient Chinese section of this year's college entrance exam -- while the test is going on!
Danwei Archives