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Friday, April 15, 2011

China to ban TV time travel


TV shows featuring time travel could be banned by the Chinese government under a fresh censorship crackdown.

Regulators have imposed tough new conditions on television production arguing such plots are "frivolous" in respecting history.

The State Administration of Radio Film and Television (SARFT) guidance would ban films and series such as Back to the Future and Life on Mars, reports the Daily Telegraph.

It criticised time travel dramas which "casually make up myths, have monstrous and weird plots, use absurd tactics, and even promote feudalism, superstition, fatalism and reincarnation".

Such shows were said to be insulting because they are "treating the serious history in a frivolous way, which should by no means be encouraged anymore."

Li Jingsheng, head of SARFT's television drama management division, said shows in which "protagonists travel backwards or forward through time via flashbacks" would be banned until there was better debate about the merits of the genre.
Professor Nie Wei, from Shanghai University's School of Movie and Television Drama Studies, said producers of several popular dramas were being forced to change their scripts.

"A warning - it is not an official ban - from Sarft is already strong enough," he told the Xinmin Evening News.

"I think whether there is time travel or not is not important. What matters is whether it is a good piece of work or not."

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