China to mark Year of the Pig with 'Peppa Pig' movie
The film includes Chinese New Year customs such as a dragon parade and fireworks, state-run China Daily reported.
Co-developed by Alibaba Pictures and Canadian media company Entertainment One - which currently produces Peppa Pig - the film includes the entire “Peppa Pig” cast and two new characters named Dumpling and Glutinous Rice Ball, two popular Chinese new year delicacies.
The series, introduced in the mid-2000s in China, has become extremely popular through episodes dubbed into Mandarin.
This fervor intensified at the end of 2017 among a young adult audience. Many internet users including stars sported temporary “Peppa Pig” tattoos in selfies, and cups, watches and clothes appeared bearing the image of the heroine Peppa.
A Chinese internet platform in May gave “Peppa Pig” the chop as state media lamented the series had become a “subversive” icon for slackers and anti-social young people.
At least 30,000 clips of the British cartoon were removed from the popular Douyin video-sharing platform, while the #PeppaPig hashtag was banned from the site.
People who upload videos of Peppa Pig tattoos and merchandise and make Peppa-related jokes “run counter to the mainstream value and are usually poorly educated with no stable job,” state-run Global Times said after the ban.
“They are unruly slackers roaming around and the antithesis of the young generation the [Communist] party tries to cultivate.”