The Chinese film authorities seem bent on keeping American releases out of the country. Even in the face of the recent easing of restrictions on imported films, several major tent pole films have been denied access, including Brad Pitt’s ‘World War Z’ and the latest casualty, ‘Despicable Me 2’.
From just a pure industry standpoint, I think the Chinese methodology is right in line with what should have been expected. China, especially in Hong Kong, has a robust film industry already serving the broader world market. The ability to selectively allow films in, while simultaneously promoting the domestic market seems a smart play. The tough spot for Hollywood being, that there is almost no mechanism to enforce copyright in China, which plays perfectly with China’s ability to delay imports.
The net result is, that Chinese movie goers pay a premium for original domestic content, they still get to see all of the Hollywood releases and the studios get to bang their heads on the wall, while watching what they thought was going to be the next golden age for their pocketbooks turn into a governmental quagmire. And that quagmire is one in which the studios are the only losers.
Check out the story at: The Wrap Movies.