A Chinese movie released just before Valentine’s Day which depicts South Korean speed skaters as rule-breaking bullies has caused outrage among South Korean citizens, prompting a professor to raise the issue to the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
“Fly, Skating Star” was released on the Chinese platform iQiyi on Feb. 12, days after the Winter Olympics’ recent speed skating disqualification scandal occurred.
The film follows the story of skating genius Cheng Huan and short-track speed skater Shen Bingxin as they participate in an Asian competition to qualify for the 2022 Beijing Winter Games. Cheng and Shen need to overcome a significant obstacle – a team of South Korean skaters who trip Cheng and injure his eye with a skate blade – to achieve their dream of representing China at the Olympics.
Earlier this month, South Korean athletes Hwang Dae-heon and Lee June-seo were disqualified for an illegal late pass and lane change during the men’s 1,000-meter semifinal event. The disqualification helped Team China win gold.
The Korean Sport & Olympic Committee (KSOC) announced that it will file an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) over the “unfairness” of the event’s judging.
Seo Kyung-duk, a professor of general education at Sungshin Women’s University, has accused Beijing of “stirring up hatred against Korea” after the movie caused outrage in the country, The Korea Times reported.
In a recent Facebook post, Seo said he has raised the issue to IOC President Thomas Bach and other IOC members via email, saying that Beijing’s decision to release the movie is “a violation of the Olympic spirit.”
“How can a country hosting the Olympic Games incite hatred against a neighboring country to evoke patriotism among its people like this?” Seo said.
“I asked the IOC to give a warning to the Beijing city authorities and the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (BOCOG), so that an incident like this would not occur again in the future,” he added.
Chinese state-run outlet Global Times accused Seo of playing the “newest trick to hype anti-China sentiment” in its headline for its story about the professor’s objection to the movie.
“Seo’s [Facebook] post soon became a hot topic on China’s Twitter-like Sina Weibo as it closely followed controversial penalties for South Korean short track speed skaters at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games, which had been used by some South Korean politicians to hype hatred against China,” the Global Times story reads.
Featured Image via iQiyi