When the cult film “Fight Club” from 1999 finally became available on the Chinese streaming platform Tencent Video, it was with a completely new twist at the end.
The original features dramatic final scenes – in which Edward Norton’s narrator kills his imaginary alter ego Tyler Durden, played by Brad Pitt, while the bombs explode around him in Project Mayhem that is to wipe out modern civilization.
But in China, these scenes have been replaced with posters with the message that the authorities won, that the bombs were not detonated and that the criminals were arrested. According to the new ending, Durden is sent to “a mental hospital” to receive treatment that results in the psychopathic, but charismatic character, recovering, reports BBC.
Chinese “Fight Club” fans who know the film from pirated copies, duly made sure to report on the authorities’ intervention in social media. Website Vice cites sources that the alternative end had to be approved by the authorities before it was sold to streaming platforms. The Chinese distributor of the film is an underuse of the state-owned channel Guangdong.
Dissident artist Ai Weiwei shared a link to an article about the changes and the comment “What would Tyler Durden say?” . Author Chuck Palahniuk, who wrote the 1996 novel on which the film is based, wrote on Twitter:
– This is really super wonderful. Everyone gets a happy ending in China!
The human rights organization Human Rights Watch describes the authorities’ censorship approach as “dystopian”, according to BBC.