News / USA

China-Hollywood Connection Changes Movie Business

China-Hollywood Connection Changes Movie Businessi
X
January 26, 2013 3:11 AM
China has become the world's second-largest market for films, after North America, and China's box office revenues are growing by 30 percent a year. The country also is expanding its joint ventures in entertainment, and as VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, it is changing the way Hollywood does business.
China-Hollywood Connection Changes Movie Business
Mike O'Sullivan
China has become the world's second-largest market for films, after North America, and China's box office revenues are growing by 30 percent a year. The country also is expanding its joint ventures in entertainment, and it is changing the way Hollywood does business.

A foreign army invaded the United States in last year's remake of Red Dawn. But producers made a change before the film was released.  The story of Americans fighting off invaders originally had Chinese soldiers as the villains. Now, they're North Koreans. The filmmaker did not want to offend Chinese audiences, or censors.

Films shot or shown in China are reviewed by a board of censors, and the spy thriller Skyfall was a recent film that had scenes cut. The science fiction film Cloud Atlas lost 40 minutes, mostly scenes showing sex and violence. Films also are cut if they have negative references to China or its government.

Some big action films have a direct China connection.  

The upcoming adventure Iron Man 3 was partly filmed in China, so its script was subject to scrutiny by Chinese officials. Chinese sensibilities also influence other films, like the disaster tale 2012, says Stanley Rosen at the University of Southern California. He studies China's film industry.

“Even if you're not shooting in China, a film like 2012 will be very careful to include positive references to China. Negative references will simply kill the market.”

Chinese audiences love big movies with special effects. Hollywood films account for half of the receipts from Chinese theaters, and Chinese officials last year raised the annual quota of film imports from 20 to 34.

Chinese moviegoers loved the recent Life of Pi, the story of an Indian boy shipwrecked with a Bengal tiger, from Taiwan-born director Ang Lee.   

Lee also has brought Chinese-themed stories to international audiences. His Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon won the Oscar for best foreign language film in 2001.

Chinese-born actress Lisa Lu has a long history in Hollywood. She played China's dowager empress in Bernardo Bertolucci's 1987 epic The Last Emperor, a Chinese co-production mostly filmed in China.

She said today's international market has created solid roles for Asian actors.

That was not true in the 1950s.

“All they wrote were either laborers or wash women or dragon lady who has a restaurant,” said Lu.

China's growing middle class has given a boost to the country's domestic film industry. Last year's comedy Lost in Thailand from director Xu Zheng was the second all time earning film in China, after the Hollywood blockbuster Avatar.

Lu said China is an attractive filming location with low production costs and great facilities.

“You go there and you can have everything that you need,” she said.

Stanley Rosen said more Hollywood studios are finding Chinese partners for co-productions, and Disney and DreamWorks Animation are investing in tourist attractions in Shanghai.

“It's an evolving relationship, and Hollywood needs China, as the North American market has been flat. But China needs Hollywood, as well, as you see with DreamWorks going in, Disney going in,” said Rosen.

And China is coming to Hollywood. The Chinese company TCL has purchased the right to rename the historic Grauman's Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard,. And the Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda Group has bought a major American theater chain, AMC. The ties between China and Hollywood are expected to grow further in the future.

You May Like

Photogallery Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving With Feasts, Festivities

Holiday traditions include turkey dinners, 'turkey trots,' American-style football and New York parade with giant balloons More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Jonathan Huang from: canada
January 27, 2013 7:13 PM
We call that the soft power. China is influencing the world, no doubt.
As China keeps growing with high speed, you will see more of that influence.


by: montegobay from: Sunnyvale, CA
January 26, 2013 11:51 AM
I hope Hollywood and US producers stop being condescending and racist showing white American heroes "rescuing" Chinese or Asian people from the villians in the TV or movies. Another aspect of that condescending attitude is it's very rare to see American women being the love interest of Asian men...but to see Asian women being the love interest is almost mandatory in any movie or TV show involving an Asian topic.


by: Kitagawa Keikoh from: Daikanyama, JPN
January 26, 2013 8:20 AM
China has a big market. That's why they have a big influence on the market. But China is not a democratic country and that means only country's officials has big right. The country officials are thinking only how they can get country's money through holes of law.

In Response

by: skullandheart from: China
January 27, 2013 11:08 AM
But how much do you really know about China buddy?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infectionsi
X
November 28, 2014 3:31 PM
South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infections

South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video To Make A Living, Nairobi Street Vendors Face Legal Hurdles, Physical Violence

The Nairobi City Council has been accused of brutality in dealing with hawkers in the Central Business District - in order to stop them from illegally selling their wares on the streets. Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.

All About America

AppleAndroid