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China Censors Ang Lee's Oscar Speech

By:
Mar 07, 2006 | 5:31am EST

The Chinese media heavily censored Ang Lee's Oscar acceptance speech during the broadcast of the Academy Awards, omitting any references to his native Taiwan or homosexuality.

The Asian nation has hailed Lee as a national hero following his triumph at the Sunday ceremony, where he was named Best Director for Brokeback Mountain.

In his speech, Lee said, "They taught all of us who made Brokeback Mountain so much about not just all the gay men and women whose love is denied by society, but just as important, the greatness of love itself."

Chinese state television decided to edit the gay references from his address, because homosexuality is still frowned upon in society and was considered a mental disorder as recently as 2001.

Chinese TV also removed Lee's closing sentence, in which he thanked, "everybody in Taiwan, Hong Kong and China."

The Beijing government sees Lee's self-ruled Taiwan as sovereign territory and the director was described as Chinese or Chinese-American by many national press.

The China Daily enthused, "Ang Lee is the pride of the Chinese people all over the world, and he is the glory of Chinese cinematic talent."

Despite the Chinese media's pride for Lee's win, the gay cowboy movie has been banned in China.

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