Chinese moviegoers will most likely not be able to see Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson’s new film "Black Adam" on the big screen. According to a story in The Hollywood Reporter, an unnamed executive at "a major Chinese movie theater chain" stated their company has "stopped hoping" the new film will be given a local release date. China has traditionally granted foreign productions a release date four to eight weeks prior to the premieres in their countries – "Black Adam" opened in the U.S. on October 21.

While there has been no official explanation regarding why the Chinese government is keeping "Black Adam" out of theaters, The Hollywood Reporter cited a theory that it is because Pierce Brosnan, who co-stars in the film as Dr. Fate, is a supporter of the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama and shared a photograph with him on social media. Hollywood talent who are critical of how the Chinese government rules Tibet, including Richard Gere and Keanu Reeves, have seen their films blocked from China.

Neither Johnson nor Warner Bros. Discovery have publicly commented on the issue. According to BoxOfficeMojo, "Black Adam" has grossed $326.2 million worldwide so far. How much profit the DC superhero movie will actually make is in question, as the reported production budget of "Black Adam" was a massive $200 million, according to The Numbers. Another superhero epic, Disney/Marvel’s "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever," is also being blocked from China. None of Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe titles have played in China since "Avengers: Endgame" in 2019, a situation that is assumed to be a response by Beijing to criticism of the Chinese government attributed to two China-born artists associated with the franchise, "Eternals" director Chloé Zhao and "Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings" star Simu Liu.