Harvey Weinstein: Some "Django" sex, violence cut for China audiences

Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained" was pulled from Chinese movie theaters on its opening day.
CBS News photo illustration

(CBS News) On the heels of speculation surrounding the removal of "Django Unchained" from Chinese movie theaters, Harvey Weinstein, co-founder of The Weinstein Company, addressed questions about the film's controversial debut in China. Earlier this month, the violent slave revenge saga from director Quentin Tarantino was pulled from Chinese theaters on its opening day, with the importer blaming an unspecified technical problem.

"Django Unchained" -- and unscreened -- in China

The film, Weinstein said, was re-cut for Chinese audiences because of a "combination" of sex and violence seen in the movie. Weinstein said on "CBS This Morning," "We made some cuts in the movie to accommodate them and I believe the movie will be up and running pretty soon," but insisted the move was not political in nature.

The rare suspension order by China Film Group Corp. was confirmed by theater employees throughout China, and led to speculation that the Hollywood film could have run afoul of Chinese censors despite weeks of promotion in the country.

The China office of Sony Pictures, which released the film, refused to comment at the time.

Referring to Chinese audiences, Weinstein said on "CBS This Morning" Tuesday, "It is a big audience and I don't think any of us want to ignore that audience either for a few cuts in the movie."

Weinstein's latest project is a film called "Kon-Tiki," a retelling of the story of a legendary expedition across the Pacific. The film will be released in select theaters on April 26. For more on that movie, as well as Weinstein's unorthodox movie choices and his motivations for selection, watch the video above.