Fight club (The fight Club in Latin America) has not lost its validity or its interest among the public, despite the fact that more than 20 years have passed since its premiere. However, David Fincher’s film has been in the news in recent days due to the absurd censorship that was applied to it in China, which included a change in the ending to make the audience believe that the police triumphed.
But even more striking has been the reaction of Chuck Palahniuk, the author of the novel Fight club. It is that the censorship of the Chinese regime caused the film to have an ending much more faithful to the book. Clearly, it was not what the authorities of the Asian giant wanted but, after all, it is what they have achieved.
Let us remember that the film adaptation of Fight club It ended with the Narrator (Edward Norton) eliminating his alter ego, Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), by shooting himself in the mouth. Although the imaginary character died, the protagonist survived with a wound to the cheek from the impact of a bullet. In the last scene, Norton and Marla Singer (Helena Bonham Carter) held hands and watched as the buildings around them exploded and collapsed, as part of the Project Mayhem conceived by Durden.
In the Chinese version that recently premiered on Tencent Video, the final part was cut and replaced with a black plate and a text saying that the police had discovered the plan and arrested the criminals. Tyler, meanwhile, had been put on trial and sent to an insane asylum. This ended up being a lot more like the ending of Chuck Palahniuk’s book published in 1996, albeit probably purely by chance. If China censored David Fincher’s film almost 23 years after its release, it is likely that the novel will not be available there either.
The Chinese ending of Fight club keep talking
In an interview with TMZ (via The Hollywood Reporter), Chuck Palahniuk referred to the controversy of Chinese censorship Fight club, Y how that change brought the end of the film closer to the conclusion of the original book. “The irony is that the way the Chinese have changed it is that they’ve lined up the ending of the movie almost exactly with the ending of the book, unlike Fincher’s, which was more spectacular. So, in a way, the Chinese brought the film back to the book”, explained the author.
If you have never read the novel, it is worth noting that its closing differs drastically from what is seen in the movie theater. Tyler fades away as Marla finds the Narrator, with the Narrator hoping the explosion will kill him. But the bomb fails and the protagonist decides to shoot himself in the head; however, he wakes up shortly after in an insane asylum believing that he has died and is in heaven. At the end, hospital employees explain that Project Mayhem is still ongoing and they leave the door open for the reappearance of Durden.
But beyond the controversy and the absurdity of the mode of censorship applied to Fight club in China, Palahniuk took the opportunity to criticize hypocrisy with whom the subject has been spoken in the United States.
“What I find really interesting is that my books are heavily banned throughout the United States. The Texas prison system refuses to have them in their libraries. Many public schools and most private schools also refuse to take my books.” But it’s only a problem once China changes the ending of a movie? I’ve endured the book ban for a long time.”