Once Upon a Time in Hollywood: Quentin Tarantino refuses to cut Bruce Lee scene for China release

Film’s Chinese release was cancelled this week following intervention from Lee’s daughter

Adam White
Saturday 19 October 2019 09:09 BST
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood trailer

Quentin Tarantino has refused to make requested cuts to Once Upon a Time in Hollywood to appease Chinese film authorities, leaving its release in the country in limbo.

Yesterday (18 October), it was reported that China’s National Film Administration had abruptly cancelled the release of Tarantino’s film following an appeal by Bruce Lee’s daughter.

Shannon Lee has been a vocal critic of the film’s depiction of her father, arguing in July that the film presents him as an “arrogant a**hole who was full of hot air”.

Despite claims that Tarantino was “frantically working” with the film’s Chinese distributor to make the required cuts for release, the Hollywood Reporter now states that the filmmaker is “taking a take-it-or-leave-it stance” over his movie.

The report additionally claims that Tarantino’s decision is partly driven by the National Film Administration’s refusal to explicitly explain to him the reasons behind the film’s pulled release

A source told the Hollywood Reporter that while Lee had appealed to the Administration about the scene depicting her father, there may also have been separate concerns within the Administration about the levels of violence in the film.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood was scheduled for Chinese release on 25 October, though it is unlikely that any agreement over a new edit will be made in time to keep the date.

It would have been the first Tarantino film to receive a wide cinematic release in the country.

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