Shine.cn is currently reporting:
Star Wars stories for Chinese readers
Chinese-language Star Wars e-books and the world’s first authorized Star Wars online novel by a Chinese author are on their way, thanks to a cooperation between China Literature and Disney China, both sides said in Shanghai on Wednesday.
Since the debut of first Star Wars movie 40 years ago, Star Wars stories have gained a huge number of fans.
China Literature, the country’s top online literature firm, will publish 40 Star Wars novels for Chinese readers. A novel based on Star Wars, by a Chinese author, will also be published, they said.
The cooperation will bring more “localized and diversified” Star Wars content to Chinese readers, they said. It will bring “China’s expression for a world-class galaxy,” said Wu Wenhui, chief executive of the Shanghai-based China Literature.
Recently, I wrote about how the LGBTQ civil rights strides that Star Wars is making, may be problematic for the Chinese government since they’ve been known to ban gay content before.
That potential issue is discussed again in a 2019 article from publisherweekly.com:
Officially, there is no censorship in China. For much of the past decade, as China’s publishing market has opened up to foreign publishers, Chinese publishers would say that potentially controversial books were tolerated so long as they remained marginal and little read. Once a book became popular and hit the mainstream, it would become subject to the scrutiny of censors.
This summer, Midu Novels (owned by Qutoutiao); Tomato Novel (owned by Bytedance, the company behind the social media platform TikTok); and Jinjiang Literature City (partially owned by China Literature, the online publishing subsidiary of Tencent Holdings, China’s most dominant holding company) were all told to remove materials deemed objectionable by the government. Those materials include salacious book covers and titles with sexual or gay themes, according to reporting by Nikkei Asian Review.
While this may worry advocates of freedom of speech, it is investors who may be most spooked. The stock price of China Literature has been plummeting. China Literature went public in November 2017 and raised $1.1 billion on the Hong Kong stock exchange in one of the most popular IPOs of a Chinese stock ever. But the share price has since fallen from a high of 110 HKD ($14) to below 25 HKD ($3.30). In June the company announced plans to buy back some $64 million in shares over the remainder of 2019.
Most of us know that Star Wars isn’t popular in China for a variety of reasons, which has less to do with “cultural cache” and more to do with Baizuo filmmakers preaching communist propaganda in a hardcore communist country. But is the Star Wars franchise popular enough to catch the eye of the censors in the communist Chinese government? Only time will tell.
h/t to Fantha Tracks
The Hollywood Reporter writes:
Disney and Lucasfilm said the Chinese story is still in development, but that it will introduce a new Chinese hero and will “combine native Chinese elements and the narrative style of Chinese literature to tell the story of Star Wars.”
It comes as little surprise that Disney is taking a new approach to cultivate a bigger Chinese audience for the Star Wars saga. Although one of the studio’s most valuable pieces of IP on a worldwide basis, the Star Wars franchise has been a curious under-performer in the world’s most populous nation.
So the Chinese audience will be able to escape the Chinese Communist Empire by reading about the Galactic Empire.
No wonder they call SJWs baizuos.