Author: MOS Translation Group – Wenya621
Recently the name Chloé Zhao has become a media sensation. Earlier this year in March, she was the “Pride of China” according to the Chinese state media, but now, her historic Oscar win has been blocked from the entire Chinese network.
On February 28th, Ms. Chloé Zhao (aka, Zhao Ting) won the Golden Globe Award for Best Director for “Nomadland,” making her the first Chinese and Asian woman to win the Golden Globe Award for directing, and the second female director ever to win the award in Golden Globe history. On the following Monday, the hashtag “#Zhao wins Golden Globe” earned 210 million views on Sina Weibo, China’s Twitter-equivalent. She was also hailed as the “light of the Chinese” and the film was approved for release in Chinese theaters on April 23rd.
But it didn’t last long — she was criticized for “insulting China” after a previous interview came to light. In a 2013 interview with “Filmmaker”, an American film magazine, Ms. Chloé Zhao reflected on her childhood, “It goes back to when I was a teenager in China, being in a place where there are liars everywhere. You felt like you were never going to be able to get out. A lot of information I received when I was younger was not true…”
When Zhao won the Oscar for Best Director in 2021 for her film “Nomadland” on April 25th, she became the first non-white woman to do so. But the CCP’s politicians in Beijing did not receive the invigorating news well. Actually, they have ordered to block it. On Weibo, “Chloé Zhao,” “Nomadland,” and “Oscar,” all of sudden became sensitive words, and all related posts were removed from the Internet.
To avoid the censorship, some Chinese netizens have to resort to using English or wisely adapted words with similar sounds such as “Nomad-land” or “No 1 land,” while others used “that girl” to refer to her. A search on Baidu, China’s equivalent of Google, for the keyword “Chloé Zhao” did not yield any news of her award. At the top of the list was an opinion piece by Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the CCP-sponsored Global Times, published in March this year. “Sooner or later, you have to pay back for what you’ve done, and Chloé Zhao said that and now these are the storms and costs she should bear,” Hu wrote.
The censorship did not just stop at keywords such as “Chloé Zhao” and “Nomadland”, it even extends to other Oscar news and award videos. There was no coverage of the Oscars in Chinese media on Monday afternoon, and for the first time in 52 years, the Oscars was not broadcasted live in Hong Kong. TVB, a premier Hong Kong media outlet that has broadcasted the ceremony in previous years, commented it was “purely commercial considerations.”
At a press conference at the Chinese Foreign Ministry on Monday afternoon, Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin tried to dodge a question by throwing, “What you mentioned is not a diplomatic issue,” when someone asked if it is true that Zhao and her film had been censored. The film, which was scheduled for release in China on April 23th, has been announced to be pulled from theaters.
The film itself has nothing to do with Chinese politics, rather, it is a story about the United States – a woman who sells all her belongings to live in a mobile home, and live as a modern-day nomad in the wake of the 2010 recession.
In addition, another film, “Do Not Split,” a documentary about Hong Kong’s anti-Extradition movement, was nominated for the best short documentary at 2021 Oscars. This just added another reason for Beijing officials to be wary.
Almost all of Western websites such as YouTube have been banned in China since long ago. But her alma mater, the New York University Alumni Association, found a way to host a live broadcast of the Oscars in Shanghai. However, the live event was botched because the organizer’s VPN somehow stopped working for two hours just around the same time of the Oscars. What a “coincidence!”
China’s internet is heavily regulated and censored for contents deemed damaging to the Communist Party. With the “Great Firewalls” in place, it prevents Chinese from accessing foreign sites to obtain news that tell truth or different opinions. As a result, some Chinese who use VPNs to bypass the firewall constantly worry about being caught and punished. And recently many VPNs have been taken down, which is a tell-tale sign on just how fearful the CCP is when people are trying to learn truth. What people see from the domestic media is all that they want people to see. What they don’t want people to see is brutally blocked.
In China, where the Chinese Communist Party is a one-party dictatorship, no one has freedom of speech – no real avenues of voice, and no real inner expression. The Chinese people are censored, threatened, and some are even made disappeared for speaking the truth.
Ms. Zhao’s works are full expressions of her courage and free thoughts; this is possible because she left China when she was 14 years old and she now lives on free soil – the United States. Without the CCP’s constraints, her true expressions resonate. The Chinese directors who reside inside the “Great Firewall,” on the other hand, are suppressed by the Communist Party, unable to give full play to their imagination and creativities, and hence are their own personalities have been gradually worn out, and turning into the dictator’s mouthpieces to glorify the Communist Party.
Upon receiving the award, Ms. Zhao told she was deeply influenced by the six words from the Chinese Three Character Classic, “People at birth are inherently good,” and she still believes them today. “This award is for anyone who has the faith and the courage to hold on to the goodness in themselves, and to hold on to the goodness in each other, no matter how difficult it is to do that.”
Her words happened to resonate with the spirits of the Whistleblower Moment led by Mr. Guo Wengui. That is — “Truth, goodness, and ferociousness.” The CCP’s performance before and after Ms. Zhao’s award fully exposed its disgraceful nature of “false, evil and ugly.”
With the emergence of Ms. Zhao’s courageous films, we get see more and more the beauty of goodness and the splendor of truth. Ms. Zhao also proves that Chinese people can live freely, with dignity, and allow their creativities to bloom, if one gets to break the shackles of the Communist system. Only without the Chinese Communist Party, may the Chinese people be able to live a fear-free an exciting life.
Ms. Chloé Zhao’s life story and achievement happens to be a testament of what the Whistleblower Movement (WM) advocates. She, along with the WM’s leader Mr. Miles Guo, Mr. Hao Haidong, Dr. Li-Meng Yan, the courageous freedom fighters of Hong Kong, and countless of our WM brothers-in-arms not only give the world an exemplary image of the new Chinese, but also lead the world to reach a consensus. The Chinese Communist Party is never the same as the Chinese! We must continue our fight in taking down the evil CCP and let the world soon to return to freedom and peace.
Editors: Brain Sanitizer, RD16 | Posted By: Rica