Monster Hunter: World and Capcom have found themselves in a peculiar predicament today as the movie got pulled by Chinese regulators over a racist rhyme, and their Steam page review bombed.
As reported by Niko analyst Daniel Ahmad, Monster Hunter: World's premiere went a bit sideways over a joke, or more precisely a rhyme.
You can check out the original joke in Ahmad's tweet below, although the actual rhyme is quite a bit different. It goes, "Chinese, Japanese, dirty knees, look at these", and it's considered offensive in China.
Capcom ended up caught in the middle through no fault of their own. While they do own the rights to the Monster Hunter IP, they had as much to do with the movie as Mila Jovovich had with the game development.
The developer issued a statement reminding that they're not the producers of the movie, and that Monster Hunter's cinematic premiere should be investigated by relevant film companies.
Nevertheless, the video was being shared like crazy and the controversy has been sown. It certainly didn't help that the subtitles didn't match the English voice, which is cited as a potential culprit.
That said, it looks like the Chinese authorities skipped investigation and headed straight to the editing room, where Monster Hunter will be recut in a way that doesn't include the unfortunate joke.
We're confident this is not what Capcom had in mind when they decided to throw on some Hollywood appeal onto their top-earning franchise, so it's certainly unfortunate for the Japanese developer.
We can only hope that the controversy will have a positive net effect on the movie's earnings, which is how such situations tend to pan out in the end.