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gwailosforever

Chinatown (Chợ Lớn ) trailer with Johnny Nguyen

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Just to confirm they HAVEN'T got past the censors. Sorry if I got everyone's hopes up. If you look at my previous post carefully I was referring to the photoshopped poster ;)

They're in a very difficult situation right now. Half of the censors have said they will refuse the film a release even if they re-shoot and edit. The script was submitted to the censors before production which has to happen with any Vietnamese movie. The board told them what needed to be revised and changed for the film to be granted a release. Apparently none of these changes were made by Johnny and Charlie, and this actually broke Vietnamese law making the situation even worse.

Some good news though, Charlie and Johnny are already in pre-production on their next film!

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A new Vietnamese release date has been pencilled in for 28th June. Although it's being advertised on a prominent multiplex website in Vietnam it still isn't 100% confirmed. As far as I'm aware the censorship body have yet to approve it.

This mess certainly hasn't stopped Charlie and Johnny from slowing down. They're currently in production on their new film 'Young Teo'. A road comedy this one so will have no problems with the censors. http://twitchfilm.com/2013/06/the-rebel-director-hitting-the-road-with-buddy-comedy-young-teo.html

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Awful new guys. The movie has been officially banned. They even spent more money on re-shoots and re-edits to no avail.

Now many of you will be thinking that's fine. Just release it overseas. Sadly that can't happen either, as Vietnamese law dictates that only a version of a film approved at home can be released internationally. If Charlie and Johnny were to release it then the Vietnamese government would blacklist them. They're not in a position to do this.

Here are some reports in the Vietnamese media

http://tuoitre.vn/Van-hoa-Giai-tri/552622/phim-bui-doi-cho-lon-chinh-thuc-bi-cam-chieu.html

http://www.sggp.org.vn/dienanh/2013/5/317450/

And Twitch's overview of the matter in English

http://twitchfilm.com/2013/06/johnny-nguyens-cho-lon-banned-in-vietnam.html

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Very sad news indeed, it kind of reminds me of when I watched the documentary about the making of 'Scarface', and De Palma explained that when he first submitted it to the movie board they deemed it to violent. So he went back, made a bunch of cuts, and when he re-submitted it they told him the same thing, so in the end he just released it in its original form and told them take it or leave it. It's a tragedy that the same thing can't happen for this movie.

It raises the question of how far directors should be willing to either compromise, or perhaps adjust is a more suitable word, their visions to accommodate their countries censorship laws. The most obvious example of this of course being Hong Kong / Chinese output post-1997. While there's no doubt movies are much more different now what they used to be, movies like 'Let the Bullets Fly' and 'Drug War' have shown they can still include underlying themes if done subtly enough, as well as deliver on the violence.

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This version is not the directors cut. It's an edit that was made to try and appease the censors, so much of the action has been edited down or cut out completely. It's also not colour timed correctly, there are no foley or sound effects for the fight scenes, sound not balanced etc. It is in no way a fair representation of what Charlie and Johnny's finished version would have looked like.

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This version is not the directors cut. It's an edit that was made to try and appease the censors, so much of the action has been edited down or cut out completely. It's also not colour timed correctly, there are no foley or sound effects for the fight scenes, sound not balanced etc. It is in no way a fair representation of what Charlie and Johnny's finished version would have looked like.

I wonder what would be different

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I was walking around a local suburb earlier, went past a Vietnamese video shop and I noticed that they had mention of this film literally all over the shop. No doubt selling the leaked version.

Goes to show you how far word has spread about it.

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