Saturday, February 18, 2023


Johnnie To's comments at the Berlin Film Festival press conference has been suspected to be inappropriate speech 

"Johnnie To bot", an account that has been relaying news and comments about the director has been banned.
courtesy of

Johnnie To Kei Fung in on the 73rd Berlin Film Festival competition jury. Earlier at the press conference before the opening ceremony, a reporter asked about the importance of film. He responded in Cantonese, stated that when the authoritarian regimes take over, films are always first to suffer. "I think for Hong Kong, no, sorry...every individual and country fighting for freedom...they should back movies, because they are speaking for you." His comments have led to heated debates. Two days ago some online in the Mainland realized that the "To Kei Fung bot" weibo account that relayed To Kei Fung news and comments suddenly has been banned. The Mainland media reported the related story, claiming that the ban on the "To Kei Fung bot" account was suspected to be related to the controversy around To Kei Fung's inappropriate comments at the Berlin Film Festival.

After the "To Kei Fung bot" vanished, a search for "To Kei Fung bot" on Weibo would result in a page that showed "this account due to complaints of the 'Weibo community guidance" violation can no long be found." Reportedly 9 movies that To Kei Fung has either produced or directed have not been released yet. Some were concerned that the movies would be banned as well.

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