Major Chinese theaters and cinema chains suspended screenings of "Django Unchained" on Thursday, the day the Hollywood film was scheduled to premiere in China.
On Thursday morning, the Huayi Brothers Cinema used its account on Sina Weibo, China's Twitter-like microblogging service, to announce that showings of the film have been suspended "for technical reasons."
An unnamed employee of the Shanghai-based cinema chain Ultimate Movie Experience (UME) told Xinhua that UME theaters in China have suspended sales of tickets for the film by director Quentin Tarantino.
"People who bought tickets for the film can get refunds or trade in those tickets to see other films," the employee said.
However, moviegoers are not advised to hold on to their tickets for "Django Unchained," as no date has been set for when the film may be shown, the UME staff member said.
Although one of the cinema's promotional posters advertised Thursday showings, the New Capital Cinema in downtown Beijing's Xidan neighborhood said it is not selling tickets for the film.
A statement posted on Mtime.com, a popular movie information and ticket booking website in China, said cinemas nationwide have received a notice from the importer of the film, the China Film Group Corporation, to suspend showings.
A moviegoer who purchased a ticket for "Django Unchained" lodged a complaint with the ticketing site after only about one minute of the film was shown before the screening stopped, according to the statement.
Xinhua's calls to the China Film Group Corporation have gone unanswered.