In the latest act of overt censorship from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the ending of the popular cult classic “Fight Club” is completely censored and replaced with a single screen featuring a hasty “epilogue.”
The 1999 film, directed by David Fincher and starring Brad Pitt and Edward Norton, ends with the nameless protagonist (Norton) succeeding in bombing the headquarters of multiple credit card companies throughout the city that the film is set in, the culmination of an anarchist terrorist plot known as “Operation Mayhem.”
But according to the Washington Free Beacon, the CCP’s new edit, as seen on the streaming service Tencent, sees the screen suddenly cut to black before the first explosion goes off. A written epilogue then appears on the screen claiming that the protagonist’s imaginary alter ego, Tyler Durden (Pitt), informed the police about the plot.
“Through the clue provided by Tyler, the police rapidly figured out the whole plan and arrested all criminals, successfully preventing the bomb from exploding,” the new epilogue declares. “After the trial, Tyler was sent to lunatic asylum receiving psychological treatment. He was discharged from the hospital in 2012.”
The bizarre new version of “Fight Club” marks only the latest example of China censoring an American film in order to cater to Chinese sensitivities or the will of the CCP. In another infamous example, movie posters for the 2015 film “Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens” saw one of the film’s black characters, who previously occupied a much larger portion of the poster, shrunk to a much smaller size due to China’s negative views of black people.
Another Disney film, the 2020 live-action remake of “Mulan,” was heavily criticized for filming in the Xinjiang province of China, the location of numerous concentration camps for imprisoned Uyghur Muslims. Further controversy arose when the film’s lead actress, Liu Yifei, responded to the criticism by openly voicing her support for the Chinese government’s violent suppression of pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong, leading to calls to boycott both the film and the actress.