British film director Paul W.S. Anderson has apologized for the “Chi-Knees” line in “Monster Hunter” and it is set to be removed from all versions after movie-goers in China found the scene offensive.
The 55-year-old director said he was “devastated” and “mortified” in a statement to Deadline.
“I apologize for any anxiety or upset that this line and its interpretation caused. Monster Hunter was made as fun entertainment and I am mortified that anything within it has caused unintentional offense,” Anderson said. “We have respectfully removed the line from the movie. It was never our intention to send a message of discrimination or disrespect to anyone. To the contrary — at its heart our movie is about unity.”
It is confirmed that the pun that relates to the World War II era rhyme, “Chinese, Japanese, dirty knees – look at these,” will be pulled from all versions of “Monster Hunter.”
Jin Au-Yeung, also known as MC Jin, the actor/rapper who delivered the line in the movie, has issued an apology on Instagram on Tuesday.
The actor posted a three-minute video in which he explained the context for the line. Jin said his character wanted to show a moment where he is proud to be a Chinese soldier. In the scene, he and an Australian soldier make jokes with each other as the “Chi-Knees” line comes up.
View this post on Instagram
“I felt this was a scene that was supposed to be a moment for Chinese people to be like ‘YES! There’s a Chinese soldiers!’ That’s all,” he said.
He went on to say that he firmly stood against racial discrimination of any form at any time.
In a reply to his social media post, co-star Milla Jovovich told the actor he “didn’t do ANYTHING wrong” and that the fault should lie on them for not doing their research about the line.
“None of us had ever heard the ‘dirty knees’ reference. You included,” said the 44-year-old actress, who is married to Anderson. “It was an unfortunate mistake and the Chinese translation didn’t help. We adore you Jin and are so proud to have worked with you on this fun and exciting project and I hope you don’t let this get you down man.”