'Fantastic Beasts 3': Warner Bros. censors gay dialog for China
And the saga of censoring gay scenes/dialogs in Hollywood movies before screening in certain regions continues. Now, Warner Bros. has cut out a crucial dialog from the new release, Fantastic Beasts: Secrets of Dumbledore that referenced the sexual orientation of the celebrated Hogwarts headmaster. The banner made the changes before the film's release in China. Here's all we know about the censoring incident.
- Hollywood has drawn flak for "increasingly" making decisions with respect to cast, plot, dialog, and settings to appease Beijing.
- In fact, in 2020, the nonprofit organization PEN America published an explosive 94-page study that cited examples of top directors and studios bending to win China's favor.
- Of course, it has to do with the huge market the country has for Hollywood films.
According to reports, Warner Bros. agreed to edit out the six-second-long worth of footage from the movie's 142-minute-long runtime upon the Chinese government's request. The removed dialogs referenced Albus Dumbledore's (Jude Law) past romantic relationship with prime antagonist Gellert Grindelwald (Mads Mikkelsen). Although Dumbledore's sexuality has been canon for over a decade, this was the first time it was explicitly mentioned in a movie.
The lines causing all the stir are, "because I was in love with you" and "the summer Gellert and I fell in love," per News.com.au. It is being said that the rest of the film has remained intact and the fact that the relationship between the male characters is intimate is understood. The production house has commented on the censoring as well.
"As a studio, we're committed to safeguarding the integrity of every film we release, and that extends to circumstances that necessitate making nuanced cuts in order to respond sensitively to a variety of in-market factors," read a WB statement as given to Variety. Agreeing that the changes were made "to comply with local requirements," the banner maintained "the spirit of the film remains intact."