Culture

Hollywood Kowtows to Communist China

When it comes down to money and morality in Hollywood, there's no contest.

Arnold Ahlert · Aug. 12, 2019

There is little doubt that one of the most self-righteous groups of Americans afflicting this nation today are the creatives we collectively refer to as Hollywood. Whenever an issue or an incident doesn’t align itself with their hard-left worldview, they never hesitate to voice their often obscene, invariably self-righteous displeasure. President Trump is their proverbial white whale, the man director Rob “Meathead” Reiner stated “will try to drive a stake through the heart of Democracy,” shortly after the Muller report did nothing to fuel their feverish impeachment fantasies. Yet if Reiner et al. are truly worried about driving a stake through the “heart of Democracy,” they’ve had a peculiar way of demonstrating it for nearly a decade. That’s the amount of time they’ve been “tailoring” movies for to earn the Chinese government’s approval — the censor-driven, dissent-crushing, Chinese Communist Party government.

Why? Because when it comes down to making their own choices between money and morality in what is soon to become the world’s largest film market, it’s no contest. “For almost a decade Hollywood has rolled over and had its fluffy belly tickled by grim-faced CCP censors,” writes columnist Will Lloyd, who further notes that the party has other conditions that must be met before Hollywood can cash in. “The movie must feature a certain number of Chinese actors, a certain number of Chinese locations and cannot portray China as a villain,” he adds.

It’s worse than that. At San Diego’s ComicCon convention last month, the trailer for “Top Gun: Maverick,” the sequel to the 1986 action film starring Tom Cruise, was aired, and some fans noticed the iconic leather flight jacket worn by his character in the original film had been altered. “All of the patches from the original film were there except for flags representing Chinese adversaries Japan and the Republic of China (Taiwan). Those flags were missing,” columnist John Fund reveals.

Why? “The Hollywood Reporter found that the Chinese company Tencent is co-financing the sequel,” Fund adds. “Co-producing the film along with Paramount Pictures is Skydance, which is partially owned by Tencent.”

Top Gun Marverick is hardly an outlier. “Mission: Impossible — Fallout” (2018), “Venom” (2018), “The Meg” (2018), “Pacific Rim: Uprising” (2018), “Wonder Woman” (2017), “Kung Fu Panda 3” (2016), “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” (2016), “Doctor Strange” (2016), “Star Trek Beyond” (2016), “The Hunger Games Mockingjay — Part 1” (2014), “Iron Man 3” (2013), “World War Z” (2013), “Looper” (2012), “Red Dawn” (2012), and “Karate Kid” (2010) are some of other movies where Hollywood was eager to accommodate CCP “sensibilities” in a nation where the government has also decreed that a maximum of 34 American films per year can be shown on Chinese movie screens.

Examples of Hollywood’s obsequiousness abound. In “Iron Man 3,” Tony Stark’s arch-nemesis, The Mandarin, was “reconfigured” and four minutes were added to the film to make sure fans knew that Iron Man derived his power from Gu Li Duo, a milk-based drink found in Chinese convenience stores. “Karate Kid” was no longer about a Japanese karate master living in America teaching an American boy about that discipline, but rather a teacher in China teaching a teenager about the Chinese martial art of kung fu. In “World War Z,” a zombie outbreak that was to have begun in China was changed to North Korea. The same transformation took place in the 2012 remake of “Red Dawn,” where filmmakers changed the uniforms and flags of Chinese invaders to North Korean in post-production, at a price of more than $1 million. And in “Looper,” a time-traveling boss from the future tells his employee who wants to go to France he’s making a mistake. “Go to China,” the boss states. “I’m from the future. Go to China.”

“The line was inserted at the direct order of the film’s Chinese distributors,” Fund reveals.

“Wouldn’t it be powerful to see a movie about the struggles of Chinese artists, writers, and (yes) even filmmakers facing the monumental censorship machine of Communist China?” asks columnist Matt Daniels. “For all their bravado in front of captive American audiences, Hollywood shows its true colors by groveling voluntarily at the feet of the master censors in Beijing.”

Nonetheless, their ego-driven hypocrisy remains unbound. In May, Alyssa Milano and other equally zealous Hollywood elitists called for a boycott of Georgia because the state passed a restrictive abortion bill. It was their second call for such action. The first one came after Republican Brian Kemp officially won the state’s gubernatorial contest, defeating Democrat Stacey Abrams. That’s the same Stacy Abrams who has become the self-promoting, Hollywood-assisted icon for “stolen” elections arising from “racist suppression.”

How does Georgia figure into the entertainment industry? It’s the state that has earned the nickname “Hollywood of the South” because in 2017, it surpassed Hollywood and New York as the place where the most top-grossing films were made. It is also home to several television series, such as Netflix’s “Stranger Things” and “Ozark” and AMC’s “The Walking Dead.”

Why Georgia? Generous tax incentives. In other words, the same Hollywood elitists who routinely rail about the rich not paying “their fair share” have opted to abandon New York and California in favor of “Deploraville” to save themselves a buck, while denying the uber-leftist, high-tax fiefdoms of California and New York the revenue they would otherwise accrue from some of the most ardent champions of big — and expensive — government.

Even more hypocritical? The same Hollywood community that has hammered our “white supremacist” president and his “equally guilty” supporters for the carnage perpetrated in El Paso, Texas, Dayton, Ohio, and Gilroy, California, is currently “re-evaluating its strategy” regarding the release of “The Hunt,” according to Hollywood Reporter columnists Kim Masters and Tatiana Siegel.

What is “The Hunt”? “The violent, R-rated film from producer Jason Blum’s Blumhouse follows a dozen MAGA types who wake up in a clearing and realize they are being stalked for sport by elite liberals,” the duo explains.

Will Universal shelve the picture? At first, it hesitated. “Out of sensitivity to the attention on the country’s recent shooting tragedies, Universal Pictures and the filmmakers of ‘The Hunt’ have temporarily paused its marketing campaign and are reviewing materials as we move forward,” a Universal Pictures spokesperson told Fox News late Wednesday.

By Saturday — a day after President Trump rightly condemned this Hollywood effort to “create their own violence, and then try to blame others” — Universal backed down. "We stand by our filmmakers and will continue to distribute films in partnership with bold and visionary creators, like those associated with this satirical social thriller, but we understand that now is not the right time to release this film,“ the studio said in a statement.

Not the right time to release — in America. A Hollywood picture heartily celebrating Trump Derangement Syndrome? Bet the farm it ends up released in China — where it will likely sail right past CCP censors.

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