In action: 'The Batman' and 'Fantastic Beasts 3' have been officially under copyright protection in China before their release
Published: Mar 21, 2022 11:30 PM
Poster of <em>Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore</em> Photo: Weibo

Poster of 'Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore' Photo: Weibo

Six new films that have started delighting Chinese audiences since Friday, including Warner Bros Pictures' The Batman and Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, were included in the list of copyright protection published by the National Copyright Administration of China.

Film industry insiders mentioned that the measures demonstrate the progress of copyright protection in China.

The Batman, based on the DC Comics character Batman and directed by Matt Reeves, was released in cinemas around China on Friday and has grossed more than 76.98 million yuan ($12.09 million) in the Chinese box office as of Monday.

The release of the movie was the biggest event of the weekend and has remained at the top of the one-day box office chart. On the media review platform Douban, the movie ranked 17th on the chart of 2022 films most worthy to wait for.

Although reviews from Chinese moviegoers say the film has a polarized and even slow narrative that made some sleepy and chose to leave in advance, the movie attracted great attention in the Chinese market before it was released.

Another movie from Warner Brothers, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, that will be released on April 8 is similar to The Batman, which has been in the waiting list of many Chinese movie fans and is ranked 12th on the Douban most anticipated chart.

Such popular films often have to face the problem of copyright infringement, even before their official release, especially on the internet, as experts said. For that reason, the Chinese authorities turned to online platforms to protect legal copyright.

The statement published on Wednesday said that internet service providers are banned from offering productions in the list of copyright protection during the release and platforms providing storage should block users from uploading material in the list.

Relevant Internet service providers should speed up the handling of notices to users on copyright protection about the removal of content or blocking of links that infringe copyrights, the statement added.

The National Copyright Administration also asked the local authorities to strengthen copyright supervision and regulation.

Besides two movies from Warner Bros, also included in the list are a science fiction disaster flick, Moonfall, that will be launched on March 25 and the Chinese movie, Lighting Up the Stars, which will hit the screens on April 2.

These six movies are the fourth batch of works under copyright protection by the Chinese authorities in 2022.

"Copyright protection is not only protecting the rights and interests of film and television creators and cinemas, but also guaranteeing the entire film and television entertainment market," Chinese film critic, Luo Luo, told the Global Times on Monday.

Luo added that she can feel how the progress on copyright protection in China has been keeping on in recent years.

"From the investigation and rectification of video resource websites and subtitle groups in recent years, it can be seen that Chinese authorities attach importance to combat network piracy," she noted.

In the first batch published in January 2022, the copyright owners of programs about the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, including the International Olympic Committee, were clarified.

Popular TV works, such as The Awakening Age and Reset, have been included in the list of copyright protection since the beginning of March.