Minions: The Rise of Gru, the second of two spin-off prequels from the Despicable Me franchise landed in Chinese cinemas on Friday, August 19.
However, despite the movie proving to be a big hit at the Chinese box office (grossing a pandemic record of about RMB21.74m on opening day, as reported by the BBC) viewers were left angered after the original ending was altered.
The movie follows a teenage version of Gru, whom viewers will remember as the antihero in the franchise, and documents his progression to supervillain.
In the original movie, Gru and his mentor, Wild Knuckles, ride off into the sunset, paving the way for Gru to become the loving antagonist we know in later films.
However, China deemed this to be too much for our fragile little minds, and instead gave us an alternate ending where Wild Knuckles is arrested and Gru “becomes one of the good guys.”
It is also said that Gru returns home to his family and his proudest achievement is becoming a father of three.
At least they did it by preserving the animation, CGI and great use of voice actors, we hear you ask.
Censors instead added still images to the credits sequence, with text in what looks awfully like a slide from a PowerPoint presentation explaining what happened.
It’s fair to say that the audience was not happy.
Some users said that the reference to Gru becoming a family man is one way China is trying to up its birth rate and encourage more people to have children.
DuSir, a movie blogger with over 14 million followers on Weibo, was particularly vexed, asking why China feels that the audience needs “special guidance and care.”
You may also remember that earlier this year Fight Club was released on Tencent Videos, and China provided another alternate ending, again letting the ‘good guys’ win (not for the first time).
READ MORE: 5 Times Movies Were Edited for China Release
Lovers of David Fincher’s adaptation of the Chuck Palahniuk book went into meltdown, claiming that changing the ending of a movie that focuses on a group of people fighting against capitalism actually goes against Chinese values.
On the other hand, China isn’t a country that stands for protests or where acts of rebellion against the system are tolerated.
The original ending was later restored, but they still left out the sex scenes, depriving us of the opportunity to see Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter in all their glory.
Do you think China will restore the original ending of Minions: The Rise of Gru? Let us know in the comments below.
[Cover image via Weibo]