Inception will be one of the rare U.S. films shown in China

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Dec 14, 2012, 4:31 PM EST

Christopher Nolan will soon be confusing a whole new moviegoing audience—the Chinese. Inception, which had made $193 million in the U.S. and $171.5 million overseas as of Sunday, just received permission for release in China, where its convoluted plot has already cleared the censors. (Maybe because they didn't understand it?)

China will only split revenues with foreign studios on 20 movies each year, and it buys the rights to other lesser-known foreign films at flat rates. While movies make more money in the U.S. than in China—Avatar earned only $204 million there earlier this year vs. nearly $750 million in the U.S.—getting one of those coveted slots is still a coup.

The film's release date there is unknown, though. The news website said Sept. 21 in a report last week, but another website,, said Wednesday that the date had been advanced to Sept. 2.

As for Nolan's last blockbuster, The Dark Knight, Warner Brothers never attempted a Chinese release, citing "cultural sensitivities." Studio executives were apparently worried that its plot, involving Batman capturing an ethnic Chinese criminal in Hong Kong, would offend Chinese censors.

(via Associated Press)