News Update


Vietnam bans a Barbie movie due to a map of the South China Sea.

Vietnam is one of the countries who oppose China’s claim to practically the entire South China Sea.

The film about the famed doll, which has already gone viral on social media, is set to hit theaters on July 21.

It is unclear which scene portrays the “offensive image” of China’s nine-dash line, as described by a senior official.

The nine-dash line is used to illustrate China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea on maps.

For years, Beijing has been constructing military bases on manmade islands in the area, as well as conducting naval patrols there to assert its territorial claims.

An international tribunal in The Hague ruled against Chinese claims in the South China Sea in 2016, but Beijing refused to recognize the decision.

Barbie is not the only item from Warner Bros. that has been prohibited in Vietnam for using the nine-dash line.

The DreamWorks animated picture Abominable was removed in 2019 for the same reason. Three years later, the Sony action film Uncharted was similarly banned by the Department of Cinema, a government agency in charge of licensing and censoring international films.

Following a protest from authorities, Netflix removed the Australian spy drama Pine Gap from the Vietnamese market two years ago.

In the South China Sea, China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia, and Brunei all have conflicting claims.


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