Magazine article Screen International

Calls for Bilateral Treaty at US-China Film Summit

Magazine article Screen International

Calls for Bilateral Treaty at US-China Film Summit

Article excerpt

Speakers at the Summit included US Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Charles Rivkin [pictured].

The ups and downs of cross-border film finance and production was the central theme at the Fifth Annual US-China Film Summit in downtown Los Angeles on Wednesday (Nov 5).

US Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Charles Rivkin said at the event that co-operation between the US and Chinese film industries "can be an economic force for good, bringing prosperity and growth to both sides of the Pacific."

"America and China each have the chance to maximise those benefits," said Rivkin, a former CEO of the Jim Henson Company, "if we can both operate with the certainty and security that comes from strong enforcement of intellectual property rights and protection of investor interests."

Referring to talks at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation trade forum that began this week in Beijing, Rivkin stressed the "importance of completing our negotiations with China for a bilateral investment treaty (BIT). If we complete an ambitious and comprehensive investment treaty we're going to ensure that American and Chinese companies can compete in each other's economies on a transparent, non-discriminatory and fair basis."

Rivkin was one of the keynote speakers at the Summit, staged as part of the Asian Society Southern California's Entertainment and Media in Asia series at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel.

An audience estimated by the organisers at around 350 heard executives from leading US and Chinese companies talking about film, TV and digital production and distribution issues in the rapidly expanding Chinese market.

During a panel on corporate strategies, Bruno Wu. chairman and CEO of Seven Stars Entertainment and Media and producer of Hollywood Adventures, a Chinese project currently shooting in the US, said that while his company continues to make Chinese films, "American English-language content is a better business. I would love to take Chinese casts global but it has to happen step by step. I would love to see the Chinese language become the universal, number one spoken language, but it's going to take a little time."

On the same panel, Yu Dong, chief executive officer of Bona Film Group, which is doing a Chinese remake of Bride Wars with Fox International Productions, compared the sizes of US and Chinese film companies. …

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