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"Cloud Atlas" cut by 38 minutes for China audience

The Associated Press, Thursday, January 24, 2013, 2:24am (PST)

BEIJING (AP) — Nearly 40 minutes have been chopped from China's version of the soon-to-be-released Hollywood film "Cloud Atlas," deleting both gay and straight love scenes to satisfy local censors despite a movie-going public that increasingly chafes at censorship.

It premiered Tuesday in Beijing in a red-carpet ceremony with actor Hugo Weaving and China's own Zhou Xun, but won't start running in Chinese theaters until Jan.31. The filmmaker's local partners have slashed that version from the U.S. runtime of 172 minutes to a pared-down 134 to expunge "passionate" episodes.

Chinese citizens have become more outspoken with their complaints about censorship of imported films as well as homegrown movies and news. Awkward cuts by censors to the most recent James Bond offering "Skyfall" prompted calls for a review of China's film censoring system.

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