Ted Cruz accuses new Barbie movie of ‘pushing Chinese propaganda’

Ted Cruz is accusing the highly anticipated Barbie film of “pushing Chinese propaganda,” after a trailer for the Warner Bros release appeared to show a map referencing China’s disputed claims to the South China Sea.

“Senator Cruz has been fighting for years to prevent American companies, especially Hollywood studios, from altering and censoring their content to appease the Chinese Communist Party,’ a spokesperson for the Texas Republican told The Daily Mail.

The issue stems back to the so-called “nine-dash line” used on Chinese maps, illustrating what it claims are its posessions within the South China Sea.

The ‘Barbie’ movie premiers this month

(© 2022 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.)

The line, first published on Chinese maps in the 1940s, demarks an area 1,200 miles from the Chinese mainlaind comprised more than 80 per cent of the South China Sea, according to The Los Angeles Times.

Parts of the territory within the line, a busy fishing and trade corridor with valuable oil and gas deposits as well as strategic importance, are claimed by nations including Vietnam and the Philippines.

About a minute into the Barbie film’s main trailer, a map of the world can be seen with a line of eigh dots jutting off a cartoonish drawing of Asia.

The Independent has contacted Warner Bros for comment.

The Republican Texas senator isn’t the only one upset about the map.

Vietnam reportedly banned the movie over the apparent reference to the Chinese claims.

The decision was issued by the country’s Central Council of Film Evaluation and Classification, Vi Kien Thanh, head of the Vietnam Cinema Department, told theTuoi Tre newspaper on Monday.

The film was set to premiere in the country on 21 July, the same time as it hit US screens.

It’s not the first time the territorial claims have impacted a Hollywood release.

Showings of the action film Uncharted in Vietnam were halted last year for the same reason. The map dispute also led Vietnam to cut a scene from the 2018 smash Crazy Rich Asians, according to the Mail.

The territorial dispute over the South China Sea territory at issue was brought before The Hague in 2016, where China lost on most of its claims. Beijing has not accepted the judgment.

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