‘Deadpool & Wolverine’ to Incur Only ‘Minimal Cuts’ Ahead of Confirmed China Theatrical Release

“Deadpool & Wolverine” will enjoy a release in mainland Chinese cinemas on July 26, simultaneous with its North American outing. And, despite hailing from what is arguably Marvel’s most adult franchise, the film will incur only “minimal cuts” for its China release.

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All foreign films entering China require permission to be imported, to clear censorship and must be allocated a release date by local authorities.

The Film Bureau-approved China release on July 26 was announced Monday morning local time in China via Marvel’s local Weibo (social media) account and subsequently confirmed by Disney.

While Disney and Marvel were not specific about the censor-imposed edits to the film, the cuts were reported to be “minimal and are due to violence, blood and gore, and language.” Sources close to the studio said that no cuts were made that impact the integrity of the storytelling and the film remains authentic to the Deadpool spirit.

That is unlike 2019’s “Once Upon a Deadpool,” which was completely reworked with all-new scenes to create a PG-13 version.

China does not have an official film rating or classification system and all film releases are theoretically supposed to be accessible to audiences of all ages. That has not stopped some exhibitors and distributors occasionally pressing for a classification system or issuing audience guidance of their own.

The decision means that including “Deadpool & Wolverine,” five out of the last six Marvel franchise movies have secured releases in China: “The Marvels” in 2023, “Ant-Man 3 in 2023, “Guardians 3” in 2023, and “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” in 2022.

“Thor: Love and Thunder” was not released in China.

Hollywood films have struggled to regain the success with mainland Chinese audiences that they previously enjoyed before the pandemic and a chilling of political relations between the U.S. and China. In both 2022 and 2023, imported films secured a roughly 15% share of mainland China’s theatrical revenue. So far in 2023, only “Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire,” produced and distributed by Legendary, a subsidiary of Chinese conglomerate Wanda, has achieved blockbuster numbers. Its gross in China was $132 million. “Kung Fu Panda,” which has Chinese themes, but no Chinese financial or creative input, is the second-ranked Hollywood title so far in 2023, with $51 million.

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