V for Vendetta, the 2005 film about a secretive, anti-totalitarian masked crusader, has long been banned in China. So when CCTV aired the uncut film today, viewers couldn’t believe their eyes. The event is now the second-most discussed topic on Weibo.
The official Weibo account @CCTV6WatchMoviesonTV announced this breakthrough moment:
CCTV6WatchMoviesonTV: V for Vendetta is on tonight at 9:52 p.m. We’ll post the plot synopsis in advance. Movie-lovers, get ready for a treat!
CCTV acknowledges that plenty of people have seen V for Vendetta despite the ban. Pirated DVDs and downloads make it easy for savvy people to see any film or TV show they like.
CCTV6’s weibo was reposted over 400 times, but has zero comments. It’s likely any comments posted were deleted.
Shocked netizens are wondering what this moment could mean for the future of censorship in China:
NotKouDe: These past few months, not only has CCTV broadcasted an interview with “Labor Camp University Village Official Ren Jianyu,” last night they also aired a film that is considered a metaphorical criticism of government–“V For Vendetta.” It’s been one unbelievable action after another! Could they be testing the waters for greater room for free speech? Or perhaps this was just the new leadership trying to butter up us rabble?
HulijunBigAdventure: Artists use lies to tell the truth. Politicians use lies to cover up the truth. In an unprecedented move, CCTV broadcasted “V For Vendetta” for the very first time, and it’s cause for celebration. It has given people hope for reform. Ideas are bulletproof.
BeijingGrassrootsPeoplesRadio: At 10 p.m. this evening, CCTV will broadcast the film V For Vendetta. Because of this film’s anti-dictatorship, freedom-fighting message, it was previously banned by the government. Although everyone online is very familiar with the film, this is its first
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