What Film Ban? The Pursuit of Happyness Reaching Chinese Theaters in January
Will Smith's power transcends trade barriers.rumored Chinese ban on foreign films has been quieted.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Will Smith's The Pursuit of Happyness will reach Chinese screens in January, despite what was supposed to have been a three-month blackout on film imports. The Reporter quotes Yuan Wenqiang, deputy manager of China Film Group Import Export Co., as saying Happyness "is coming in January...We are planning what day to release it."
The article goes on to address some of the Chinese-American squabbles -- such as rampant Chinese film piracy -- that are thought to have contributed to talk of the ban, as well as the advantage of starting rumors versus pursuing legal channels:
"In China, litigation means loss of face," Teng Jimeng, professor of film and American studies at Beijing's Foreign Studies University, said in an interview. "No brothers or partners would go to court to settle disputes. Litigation is the last resort, and they break relationship if litigation occurs. With China unable to break its trade relationship with the U.S. in reality, an unannounced ban is the choice, because it does not cost anything to return to the 'business as usual' state of affairs, say three months later."
Happyness' arrival is welcome news for Chinese theater owners, who rely on imported films for a significant percentage of their receipts. Wayne Zhang, owner of a Beijing theater, tells the Reporter that "Hollywood films have done really well this year, so a lot of theater owners will be happy," qualifying with "Chinese or foreign, we're happy if the movies are good."
Source: The Hollywood Reporter