When copycat becomes cultural norm in China: Foreign movie posters ripped off

Alia | March 3rd, 2012 - 4:32 am

It is not an easy task to design a really original and creative movie poster. Given the number of movies in existence, no matter what is put into a movie poster, it probably has already been used somewhere else.

But what you will see below has nothing to do with draining creativity. It is plain copycat. For all the movie posters shown below, the Chinese movies on the right were released after the foreign ones on the left. (Click links to see details about movies on IMDB or Mtime China).

Most of them are movies of similar genres. For example. Phobia 2 from Thailand and Midnight Beating, both are horror movies. Street Kings from the US and Chongqing Blues, both are gangster movies. Addicted to Love from the US and Sophie’s Revenge, both are chic love comedy.

Other pairs, however, almost have a wicked sense of humor such as The Ides of March vs. Lao Nan Ren Li Xian Ji (translated as “The Adventure of a Middle-aged Man”), Taken vs. The Killer Who Never Kills, and Fahrenheit 9/11 vs. Dear Enemy (love drama).


South Korea: Sad Movie (2005) VS. China: You Ren La Wu Mi (2011) VS. China: The Allure of Tears (2011)


US: Vantage Point (2008) VS. China: Seven 2 One (2009)


Thailand: Phobia 2 (2009) VS. China: Midnight Beating (2010)


US: Street Kings (2008) VS. China: Chongqing Blues (2010)


SouthKorea: A Tale of Two Sisters (2003) VS. China: Illusion Apartment (2010)


US: Addicted to Love (1997) VS. China: Sophie’s Revenge (2009)


US: The Ides of March (2011) VS. China: Lao Nan Ren Li Xian Ji (2011)


UK: Love Actually (2003) VS. China: Fit Lover (2008)


US: Daddy Day Camp (2007) Vs. China: Eaters (2010)


US: Boogeyman (2005) VS. China: Midnight Beating (2010)


US: Flags of Our Fathers (2006) VS. China: Jing Tian Dong Di (2009)


France: The Pianist (2002) VS. China: Iris Chang – The Rape of Nanking (2007)


UK: Pirate Radio (2009) VS. China: Sleepless Fashion (2011)


France: Taken (2008) VS. China: The Killer Who Never Kills (2011)


US: Fahreheit 9/11 (2004) VS. China: Dear Enemy (2011)


US: Yours, Mine and Ours (2005) VS. China: Perfect Wedding (2010)


US: Valentine’s Day (2010) VS. China:  Hot Summer Days (2010)


US: Ocean’s Twelve (2004) VS. China: Fit Lover (2008)


US: Diary of a Wimpy Kid (2010) VS. China: Welcome to Sha-ma Town (2010)

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35 Responses to “When copycat becomes cultural norm in China: Foreign movie posters ripped off”

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  3. Mariam says:

    Why viewers still use to read news papers when in this technological world the whole thing is existing on web?

  4. Aaron says:

    China people likes to copy toys too like the ones from Japan

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  6. [...] rapidement qu’ici, il s’agit clairement de plagiat, comme l’a démontré le site offbeatchina.com.Original US : Addicted to Love (1997) vs. Copie Chine : Sophie’s Revenge (2009)Original US : [...]

  7. money says:


    [...]When copycat becomes cultural norm in China: Foreign movie posters ripped off | Offbeat China[...]…

  8. [...] enough ranting from me. I just wanted to show these Chinese movie posters from the blog Offbeat China that were pretty unoriginally copied from other movies. [...]

  9. [...] other day, I came across a rather comprehensive collection of copycat posters in China, with the layout, photographic style, and general concept lifted directly from Hollywood movies of [...]

  10. [...] Maar de voorbeelden hieronder, afkomstig uit China waar ‘copyright’ wordt vertaald als ‘right to copy’, zijn van een andere categorie. Categorie jatwerk. Het betreft hier niet een Chinese versie of remake van een bestaande film (links), maar een compleet andere Chinese film, meestal van een soortgelijk genre. Meer hier. [...]

  11. [...] found this website and article, When copycat becomes cultural norm in China: Foreign movie posters ripped off, on CNN, and let’s just say that the Chinese movie industry is not very shy about their movie [...]

    • rollo says:

      The Chinese are like, the Borg from star trek. They assimilate everything and every idea. It is never about ethics or personal integrity; It is about ripping everything off that is not nailed down. There modern culture distils down to, not just imitating, but assimilating, then pretending that those intellectual ideas belonged to them all along.

  12. Skippy says:

    The font in ‘Welcome to Shamatown’ looks very much like the font from the Harry Potter movies.

  13. Rocket says:

    On the girl poster for Diary of a Wimpy Kid (the American poster): broach=brooch. I bet the Chinese posters are spelled right.

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    [...]When copycat becomes cultural norm in China: Foreign movie posters ripped off | Offbeat China[...]…

  15. Pali Breeze says:

    The inferior copy.

  16. Flychick86 says:

    This was really interesting to look at. I thought about how some of them were and when they called them rip-offs.

  17. Flychick86 says:

    This was really interesting to look at. I kinda thought about when they called them rip-offs.

  18. niiorkl says:

    If you look at the daddy day car one, you can see that the chinese rip-off has even cloned the guy’s body and only copy-pasted the chinese actor’s face on it…pretty lame, even for them…

  19. Dave Bartlett says:

    Well if these are all classed as rip-offs, I want to claim originality, since “A Tale of Two Sisters” (2003) and “Illusion Apartment” (2010) are BOTH obvious rip-offs of “My mum and my auntie sitting on their two seat sofa with my grandparents standing behind” (about 1947, I think.)

  20. Ussef says:

    Some are really blatant rip-offs, but others do just convey the same idea or the “original” isn’t that “original” to begin with…

  21. ChinaNik says:

    Even if some of the posters may look generic they are still original art…Arranging a few photos in a particular way still conveys an idea and is a copyrighted material….So, yes, no matter how innocent they may look, the Chinese ripoffs are still rip offs…and should not be defended….

  22. [...] Англоязычный источник и другие изображения | Прислал Целофан Кулёчкин var addthis_config = {"data_track_clickback":true}; Нашли ошибку в тексте? Выделите её и нажмите Ctrl+Enter. [...]

  23. [...] Some of these Chinese movie posters aren’t copying other examples so much as offering variations on a generic design—or maybe I just can’t contemplate somebody actually bothering to rip off Addicted to Love‘s foursome—but others are so nakedly plagiarist they’re almost charming. [...]

  24. Miller says:

    No surprise there. Fabulous shanzhai work.

    That said, the posters for “Taken” and “Yours, Mine & Ours” are common looking enough that the Chinese poster paired with it could be a direct rip-off or could just be following the same archetype. The people crowded behind a door being shut especially is something I’ve seen in other movie posters (off the top of my head, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” is 差不多).

  25. Very funny stuff. The ones near the bottom seem more like they *may* be coincidences. In particular, Sleepless Fashion’s poster seems pretty original. But a lot of them are, well, “shanzhai.”

  26. Ren says:

    Okay to be fair, some are pretty generic…a bunch of faces in a heart is not copying. But, that said some are pretty blatant copies!

  27. nick says:

    A lot of them are just generic. Those US romantic comedies that are ‘copied’ look like 1000s of other romantic comedy covers from all over the world….

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