That’s why they call it show business.
Adam Sandler said his new sports comedy “Hustle” was set to take place in China, but Netflix asked him to change the script because the streaming platform isn’t available there. (Check out the interview below.)
Sandler plays a down-on-his-luck basketball scout who discovers a street-ball phenom in Spain he hopes to sign for an NBA team. Juancho Hernangomez of the Memphis Grizzlies plays the would-be star.
But the plot was different in the original version of the film.
“It was written originally that I find a player in China. And somehow, Netflix is not in China. So they were like, ‘Would you guys please make it that we find someone in Latin America or Europe?’” Sandler told talk show personality Dan Patrick recently.
“Next thing you know, I’m in Majorca.”
Netflix didn’t immediately respond to HuffPost’s request for comment.
IMDB on Wednesday still mentioned “China” in its synopsis of the movie.
Netflix has reportedly eased up its efforts to penetrate the Chinese market in recent years.
The reported directive to Sandler also follows lingering tension between the NBA and China. In 2019, Houston Rockets then-general manager Daryl Morey tweeted support for pro-democracy demonstrators in Hong Kong, angering Chinese officials who severed sponsor contracts with the NBA and restricted viewing of the games.
The league apologized to China. A bipartisan group of lawmakers then accused the NBA of kowtowing to China in the name of profits.
Lakers superstar LeBron James is co-producing Sandler’s movie, and Jeremiah Zagar is the director.
Sandler as recently as last weekend was sighted in Philadelphia, where the movie was reportedly shooting scenes.
Fast-forward to 2:39 for the part about China: