Tuesday, February 01, 2011
China Air Force goes 'Top Gun'
On Jan. 23, China's state broadcaster, CCTV, ran a story about an air force training exercise that contained some suspicious footage.
Around the segment's one minute 12 seconds mark (see above), as the China-U.S.-oriented blog Ministry of Tofu pointed out, "the way a target was hit by the air-to-air missile fired by a J-10 fighter aircraft and exploded looks almost identical to a cinema scene from the Hollywood film Top Gun."
Viewers were led to believe that what they were seeing was a live fire exercise. But according to Ministry of Tofu: "A net user who went by the name "刘毅" (Liu Yi) pointed out that the jet that the J-10 'hit' is an F-5, a US fighter jet. In Top Gun, what the leading actor Tom Cruise pilots an F-14 to bring down is exactly an F-5. Looking at the screenshots juxtaposition, one cannot fail to find that even flame, smoke and the way the splinters fly look the same."
Not convinced? The Wall Street Journal's China Real Time Report put the videos side-by-side.
The seemingly doctored footage has been removed from CCTV's website. But Real Time China Report notes that Chinese media has in the past been caught red-handed lifting fictional U.S. material in news reports.
"In 2002, the popular Beijing Evening News tabloid translated and published as genuine a satirical news article by The Onion about U.S. Congress threatening to leave Washington D.C. unless the city built them a new building with a retractable roof," writes Josh Chin. "Five years later, the state-run Xinhua news agency infamously used an x-ray image of Homer Simpson's head to illustrate a story about the discovery of a genetic link to multiple sclerosis."
CCTV has declined to comment in media reports.
SHOOT: I wonder if the idea occurred to them via the new Kulula ad, or vice versa?