Culture minister Kevin Yeung said on Wednesday that it was the distributor's decision to drop the screening of a British slasher film from local cinemas.
Yeung told reporters that he only learnt from the news in recent days that "Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey” had been pulled by the distributor.
"The distributor eventually decided not to show the movie, for now, in Hong Kong. I think this was the distributor's own decision," the secretary for culture, sports and tourism said.
He noted the film earlier passed the vetting of the authorities.
It was classified as a Category III film – for people aged 18 or above only – by the Office for Film, Newspaper and Article Administration.
"The arrangements of cinemas in Hong Kong on the screening of individual films with certificates of approval in their premises are the commercial decisions of the cinemas concerned," the office said in response to media enquiries.
The distributor, VII Pillars Entertainment, said on its social media page on Tuesday that it had cancelled the film's screening in Hong Kong and Macau with regret. "We are incredibly sorry for the disappointment and inconvenience," it said.
The movie had been scheduled to be shown in local cinemas from Thursday.