China Bans New 'Winnie the Pooh' Movie After Comparisons to Leader Xi Jinping

Oh bother.

Disney’s new film, “Christopher Robin” will not be allowed in China after the government blocked its release there.

Although the Chinese government did not offer a reason for the ban, Beijing has been banning images of Winnie the Pooh since the character started being used to mock Chinese President Xi Jinping, Fox News reported.

Beginning in 2013, social media users began comparing Xi to the bear of very little brain. An image of Xi walking next to former President Barack Obama was soon twinned with one of Pooh walking next to Tigger.

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Individuals wanting to indirectly protest against the Chinese government kept up the comparisons, leading China to block images of Pooh on social media, the BBC reported.

China also has blocked Western efforts to mock its ban on Pooh. In June, HBO was blocked after “Last Week Tonight” host John Oliver mocked Xi on the issue of being compared to Pooh.

In 2015, a picture showing Xi in a motorcade was shared next to one of Pooh in a toy car.

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The company Global Risk Insights, in a blog post, offered its reasons for the ban.

“The government’s reaction is disproportionate and puzzling for two reasons. Firstly, where some see harmless fun, Beijing sees a serious effort to undermine the dignity of the presidential office and Xi himself,” the company wrote.

“Authoritarian regimes are often touchy, yet the backlash is confusing since the government is effectively squashing a potential positive, and organic, public image campaign for Xi,” Global Risk Insights continued, naming the 2015 image China’s “most censored image of 2015.”

“Beijing’s attack on Winnie the Pooh may be farcical, but it is also an indication of more serious trends in China’s media,” the post added.

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Qiao Mu, a former Beijing Foreign Studies University professor, said the apparent ban was not a surprise and noted that no one can be sure where China draws the line.

“It’s very murky what’s allowed and what isn’t because officials never put out statements describing precisely what will be censored,” Qiao said, according to the New York Post.

Some said there were other factors at work. In its reporting on the ban, the Hollywood Reporter said China only allows 34 foreign films a year into the country, and noted that Disney’s “A Wrinkle in Time” was also not allowed in China.

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Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at jackwritings1@gmail.com.
Location
New York City
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Politics, Foreign Policy, Military & Defense Issues




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