As you probably know, the 2008 Summer Olympics will take place this August in Beijing, China, and they have been completely focused on making everything just perfect for the crowds of athletes and visitors who will be guests in their country during the competition (not to mention the millions that will be watching from home). However, throughout the painstaking process of preparation, there has been a increasing amount of government control being put in place to rein in anything at all that might reflect poorly on China. Recently they have been cracking down on websites that present content that is deemed to be “vulgar”, and now it seems they are stepping up the ban to include horror movies as well.
According to a story at Reuters, media outlets have been given three weeks to find any horror-related content and report it to the The General Administration of Press and Publications. Problematic movies would include anything related to “wronged spirits and violent ghosts, monsters, demons, and other inhuman portrayals, strange and supernatural storytelling for the sole purpose of seeking terror and horror”. Apparently they are worried about the negative influence that horror movies might have on the general public, and they aim “to protect adolescents’ psychological health”. You know, as much as I can understand China taking this opportunity to put their best foot forward and wanting to impress the world, I have to wonder… aren’t they worried about the bad press that this kind of censorship might incur?