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Taiwan aboriginal war epic to hit China

Taiwan's acclaimed aboriginal war epic 'Seediq Bale' will be screened in China next month, its director said Tuesday, after concerns the film would not be approved for release by authorities.

Thursday 19 April 2012, 09:03AM

But the version to hit screens in China from May 10 will be cut short to 154 minutes, director Wei Te-sheng said, compared with the original two-part, four-and-a-half hour version that enraptured audiences in Taiwan last year.

"Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale" is based on the true story of Taiwan's indigenous headhunters who fought against Japanese colonial forces in the 1930s.

Taiwan media reported previously that the movie's producer had been worried the film might not be approved by Chinese authorities as it could encourage uprisings by ethnic minority groups in regions like Tibet and Xinjiang.

Wei said many of the bloody scenes, which include a high number of graphic beheadings, will be removed from the short version, also being released in North America later this month.


"Seediq Bale" set a record in takings for home-grown pictures, raking in Tw$880 million ($29.8 million) in domestic box office earnings last year.

Costing Tw$700 million ($23.7 million), it was the island's most expensive production and was shortlisted for the 2012 Oscars Best Foreign Film nominations, though did not make the final five.

In 2011 it was also nominated for the Golden Lion in Venice and scooped six gongs including Best Picture at Taiwan's Golden Horse Awards, known as the "Chinese Oscars".

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