Trump should access Hollywood to gain leverage over China

One thing Hollywood is learning about Chinese audiences is that they love these speed and special effects films more than they do films that read as not-to-subtle nationalist propaganda. The Great Wall, an American and Chinese joint production starring Matt Damon, was a disappointment in both the United States and China.

That’s why, now that the movie quota is subject to renegotiation, the Trump administration has an opportunity to take a hard-line stance on the need for an open marketplace and a rollback of censorship restrictions to open up China to everything American filmmakers have to offer—not just from Hollywood, but from New York and Georgia, the number two and three filmmaking states.

The Trump administration should insist on eliminating—or at least dramatically expanding—the current film quota. It should also guard against a situation where films made by American-based companies which are owned by Chinese conglomerates count against any negotiated quota.

As companies like Wanda Group expand into Hollywood the potential exists to artificially crowd out American-made films. Wanda Group owns Legendary Pictures, co-producers of films like Jurassic World, Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island, as well as AMC Entertainment, the largest theater chain in the world.