Chinese Censors to Screenwriters: No More Time Travel Plots

Posted on April 12, 2011

The Chinese censors are at it again. The New York Times reports that this time, they are demanding that screenwriters and producers cut out all references to time travel in television and movies. One of China's most popular tv shows is a time travel drama about a woman who falls in love with a Qing dynasty painting and somehow ends up going back in time, where she falls in love with a prince.

Now if there's one thing the Chinese government can't stand it's a positive representation of a non-Communist China full of royalty, romance, ancient religion and the like. So the State Administration for Radio, Film & Television has issued guidelines. The guidelines inform writers that time traveling shows "casually make up myths, have monstrous and weird plots, use absurd tactics, and even promote feudalism, superstition, fatalism and reincarnation" and that apparently is a Very Bad Thing.

So, no myths, weird plots, promotion of feudalism or superstition allowed. Oh, and no "absurd tactics" or references to reincarnation. Well, that knocks out our new spec script which stars a clairvoyant, time-traveling princess who -- with her trusty ghost sidekick -- battles zombies to take her mind off her unrequited love for a Buddhist monk.

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