The Internet Is Boycotting DreamWorks’ Abominable Because of Illegal Map of West Philippine Sea

Vietnam has banned the film, and now Filipinos are calling for the same action.

A controversial scene in the newly released animated film by DreamWorks’ Abominable is making the rounds on social media because it depicts China’s Nine-Dash Line in the West Philippine Sea. It also erased Mindanao and the Visayas in the Philippines' territory, angering Filipino netizens. Abominable was coproduced by DreamWorks and Pearl Studio, a Shanghai-based Chinese production firm.

At the beginning of the movie, the main character spreads out a map of China that depicts the illegal Nine-Dash Line encircling the entire South China Sea, including the West Philippine Sea.

In a landmark victory for the Philippines on July 12, 2016, an international arbitral tribunal under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea declared China’s claims on the entire South China Sea illegal.

Foreign Affairs secretary Teodoro Locsin, Jr. has suggested to cut the scene and called for a universal boycott of all DreamWorks productions. “For me, call a universal boycott of all Dreamworks productions from here on,” he said.


However, Locsin fell short of calling for the total ban of the film in the Philippines, saying that removing the offensive scene is a better form of protest than banning the film entirely.

This week, Vietnam pulled the DreamWorks film from its movie houses, citing the illegal map of the South China Sea, which it also claims in its entirety. China, Malaysia, Vietnam, and the Philippines have overlapping claims on the South China Sea.

The West Philippine Sea is the part of the South China Sea, over which sovereign and maritime rights of the Philippines extend.

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