(RepublicanJournal.org) – Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) says Warner Bros’ upcoming “Barbie” movie is merely the latest in a series of Hollywood films that have bought into the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) demands to edit their content. American filmmakers have been allegedly making changes to their movies in an effort to meet the foreign country’s standards and keep the industry open to Chinese citizens. Lawmakers like Cruz are crying foul, claiming filmmakers are pushing CCP propaganda.
The issue with “Barbie” lies in a scene that portrays China’s version of territorial lines on a map — one which includes regions that Vietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia, and the Philippines have long claimed as theirs. The “nine-dash line” map became outdated in 2016 when a court ruling in The Hague determined the broader ownership of the areas. The CCP has never accepted the decision and insists all the land and sea within the lines have always belonged to China.
Cruz alleges filmmakers purposefully used the older map to appease the CCP. Mediaite quoted a statement from the senator in which he accused China of manipulating US filmmakers “to control what Americans see, hear, and ultimately think.” The Texas legislator initially took on Hollywood when he introduced the Stopping Censorship, Restoring Integrity, and Protecting Talkies, or SCRIPT, Act in 2020. The legislation proposed federal funding cuts to companies that altered their content to appease the CCP’s demands.
The Chinese market for US films has grown dramatically in recent years — but it has also used that leverage to increase its demands on the content it’s willing to accept. Filmmakers must meet the CCP’s censors’ requirements or suffer the possibility of losing all of China’s viewership, which could prove costly.
For all Warner Bros. did to retain its Chinese audience, it will be losing the chance to release “Barbie” in Vietnam. The coastal Chinese neighbor has issued a ban of its own in response to the offensive map.
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