The recent controversy surrounding the censorship of Fight Club in China came to a natural conclusion when the Chinese government decided to restore the original ending of the David Fincher cult classic after prolonged backlash from fans all over the world. This development came after significant alterations had been made to the plot of the story.
In the online release of Fight Club in China, the subversive messaging of the film’s text was changed so that the state came out on top. Instead of championing the anarchists who wanted to dismantle the corrupt institutions by force, the Chinese version edited it so that the government looked good for arresting the revolutionaries.
“Through the clue provided by Tyler, the police rapidly figured out the whole plan and arrested all criminals, successfully preventing the bomb from exploding,” the statement released with this version said. “After the trial, Tyler was sent to lunatic asylum receiving psychological treatment. He was discharged from the hospital in 2012.”
The original book’s writer Chuck Palahniuk also publicly criticised the changes that had been done by the Chinese censorship board. In a recent interview, David Fincher shared his opinions about the alterations as well and explained that there was a boilerplate contract in place for the Chinese release but the government did not announce it wanted to change the ending.
“If you don’t like this story, why would you license this movie?” Fincher mused. “It makes no sense to me when people go, ‘I think it would be good for our service if we had your title on it… we just want it to be a different movie.’ The fucking movie is 20 years old. It’s not like it had a reputation for being super cuddly.”