Nicolas Cage's new war movie Outcast has been unexpectedly pulled from cinemas in China, hours before its scheduled release.

The film, directed by Nick Powell and co-starring Hayden Christensen, had been due to open across the country on Friday (26Sep14), but executives at distributors Yunnan Film Group called off the release at late notice.

No reason has been given for the move, which has also baffled the movie's producers at Arclight Films.

Producer Mike Gabrawy, who flew to Beijing for the opening, tells The Hollywood Reporter, "We have no idea why it was pulled. We were advised in the middle of the night...

"We don't know if it's a censorship issue... We are trying to get to the bottom of this."

The Chinese film industry is known for its strict censorship rules, which have previously forced producers behind Hollywood movies such as World War Z, Cloud Atlas and Skyfall to release edited versions, while biblical epic Noah was banned on religious grounds.