Friends The Reunion, which aired on China’s streaming platforms Youku, iQIYI and Tencent Video, had entirely edited out scenes starring Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber, BTS
Friends: The Reunion, the special episode of the favored sitcom Friends, was censored by China, with a number of of the guest appearances getting shaved off. The appearances of the K-pop band BTS, Justin Bieber and lady Gaga were edited out from the episode, renedring it shorter by about six minutes.
As per a Hollywood Reporter report, China’s leading video platforms — iQiyi, Tencent Video and Alibaba’s Youku acquired the rights of the special episode but all of them censored the 110-minute episode.
In China, the ‘Friends’ reunion was streamed by the country’s three leading platforms including iQiyi, Tencent Video and Youku by Alibaba.
As per the report, the clip during which Korean pop band BTS spoke about its love for Friends was cut out due to the sour relationship between China and the band since last year. One main reason could be that China had supported North Korea in the Korean War however, members of BTS have vocally expressed South Korea’s camaradrie with the U.S., inciting controversy.
Another pop star Lady Gaga, who isn’t in the good books of China after she met Dalai Lama in 2016, was censored from the Chinese version of ‘Friends’ reunion. Her rendition of Lisa Kudrow’s Phoebe’s song ‘Smelly Cat’ wasn’t included in the special.
The third star to earn a ban in China was Justin Bieber, who had offended the Chinese sensibilities when he visited Tokyo’s Yasukuni Shrine and posted about the same on Instagram.
In India, the much-hyped ‘Friends: The Reunion’ special amassed over a million views upon release on Thursday.
Among other cast members who make an appearance are Maggie Wheeler (Janice), Tom Selleck (Richard), and James Michael Tyler (Gunther), besides a host of celebrities like Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, Cindy Crawford, and Cara Delevingne making cameos appearances.
That apart, BTS, Reese Witherspoon, Kit Harrington and David Beckham address “Friends” fans through recorded messages.