TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – After controversy was stirred at the 55th Golden Horse Awards by mention of Taiwanese independence and the phrase “Taiwan, China” used by a Chinese actor, media reports suggest the Chinese government has banned participation by Chinese citizens at next year’s event.
The Publicity Department of the Chinese Communist Party issued a memo to the Film Bureau stating that Chinese citizens invited to next year’s ceremony will be barred from attending, reported Liberty Times.
The award ceremony caused international headlines and protests within Taiwan after Chinese actor Tu Men (涂們) described Taiwan as “Taiwan, China.”
Tu’s comments shocked the audience and caused a social media storm.
Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) responded by saying “we have never accepted such saying as ‘Taiwan, China’ and will not accept it. Taiwan is Taiwan,” in a Facebook post.
Taiwan’s Culture Minister Cheng Li-chiun (鄭麗君) also rebuked Tu’s comment by saying “Taiwan is the most liberal, democratic, diverse, and enthusiastic country in Asia.”
Taiwanese filmmaker Fu Yue (傅榆) said her greatest wish was for Taiwan independence, which led to a torrent of malicious comments by Chinese netizens.
Broadcast of the event was immediately cut off in China after Fu’s comments, reports suggest.
In the wake of the incident, a host of Chinese participants in the award ceremony prematurely left Taiwan, canceling promotional appearances and other appointments.
The Executive Committee of the Golden Horse Awards and the Cross-Strait Film Exchange Committee both told Libery Times that they had not been told about a potential Chinese boycott of next year’s award ceremony.