2006 Movie News Archives

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August 5, 2006: Superman in China

With "Superman Returns" set to open in China this month, the China Broadcast website takes a look at how Chinese moviegoers relate to the Man of Steel and American superheroes in general. Here's an excerpt from the article...

    "There's something just very brash about the superhero - these characters flaunt their special abilities by dressing so as to draw attention to themselves," says the director of ComicsResearch.org, Dr. Gene Kannenberg Jr. "Perhaps it's this very brashness that seems 'American' to other cultures - the USA calls itself a 'superpower' after all - and is therefore a little off-putting."

    Compared to China, with its millennia-sprawled history and richly layered legends, this peculiarly American audacity is the mark of an upstart culture. "We have myth and history, but American heroes just have one writer, one man," says Nicole Li, a Beijing-based journalist in her late twenties. "The writers think they can say, 'hey he's here - it's Superman!' and we'll get excited. But we don't have the imaginary space for him."

    Kannenberg agrees with Li that the American superhero comes out of a historical vacuum - out of a cultural landscape without Robin Hoods or Hectors or Wu Songs to celebrate. In a sense, Superman is a metaphorical outgrowth of America's patchwork past. "He is the ultimate American in the sense that he's the ultimate immigrant - who has traveled further than Kal-El to become an American?" he says.

    Perhaps his imminent immigration to China will be well received - after all, he is the most popular character of the American superhero tradition. "We like Superman the best," says Wang Jie, an English teacher who watched the Superman movies in the 1990s, but isn't sure if she'll see the movie. "At least he's a man. Spiders and bats - those are hard for Chinese people to like."

Read the complete report at the China Broadcast website.

Thanks to Mike Poteet (Bibliomike) for bringing this article to our attention.

2006 Movie News

Listed below are all the Movie News items archived for 2006 organized into various categories:

“Superman Returns” Movie News:

Christopher Reeve Movie News: Hollywoodland (George Reeves) Movie News: Direct-to-DVD Animated Movie News: Other Movie News:

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