China launches musical in bid to counter Uyghur abuse allegations

The movie, whose release was reportedly delayed by a year, focuses on three men from different ethnic groups dreaming of the big time as they gather musical inspiration across cultures in the snow-capped mountains and desertscapes of the vast region.

Trailing the movie, state-run Global Times reported that overseas blockbusters such as “La La Land” have “inspired Chinese studios” to produce their own domestic hits.

But the musical omits the surveillance cameras and security checks that blanket Xinjiang. Also noticeably absent are references to Islam – despite more than half of the population of Xinjiang being Muslim – and there are no mosques or women in veils.

In one scene, a leading character, a well-shaven Uyghur, toasts with a beer in his hand.