Friday, March 2, 2018

Opening China to Taiwanese films: it's a trap


Or, please consider this your daily reminder to never, ever trust the Chinese government, ever. They never do anything 'benevolently', at least when it comes to Taiwan. There is always an underlying motive. The CCP is evil, not stupid.

So what could the motive be for lifting restrictions on the Chinese market for Taiwanese films?

Frankly, it's the same reason why they allow so many Chinese students into Taiwan, and have made Taiwanese universities sign "memoranda of understanding" that certain topics the CCP doesn't like won't be discussed. It didn't seem like much was happening as a result, and the topics were not actually banished from Taiwanese university classrooms, but the point was, China could have started insisting on enforcement whenever it wanted, and if this or that university refused, no more revenue stream from Chinese students' tuition for them! Good idea to get them good and dependent on it, first, of course.

The article itself, despite its laughable breakdown of history (the same old risible "since 1949" nonsense), contains this answer within it:

An Fengshan, spokesman for China’s Taiwan Affairs Office said: “Taiwanese compatriots can share in the opportunities arising from China’s economic development.”

Yo, An Fengshan can cho - - - oh yeah, I'm trying to be less vulgar about serious topics.

Ahem. Anyway.

The translation of An's foetid garbage talk is this: when Taiwanese movies become more popular thanks to wider distribution in China and Taiwanese film production companies start to feel more dependent on Chinese revenue, the Chinese government will start placing demands - enforcing harsher censorship rules, trying to control which stars can appear in which movies, that sort of thing. Shutting down productions they don't like by suddenly having a problem with the Taiwanese crew they were allowed to come in with.

It's just another way to try and control Taiwan's media output. 

Not wanting to spend the time/money/resources to make two versions of the same film or lose potential sales by casting "unwelcome" stars who do not parrot Beijing's propaganda, companies will just start self-censoring from the get-go to stay in the Chinese market. So we in Taiwan will end up watching Taiwanese movies with more of a CCP-approved Chinese twist.

Then there's this:

Similarly, reducing the numerical limits on Taiwanese talent, is unlikely to mean complete derestriction. China has actively excluded Taiwanese performers who it considers politically undesirable. In 2016, producers of “No Other Love” were ordered to remove veteran Taiwanese actor Leon Dai from the film which was in post-production at the time. Dai fell foul of mainland authorities by not being clear enough over his stance on Taiwanese independence.

Pro-Taiwan actors and other film industry workers will find themselves short of roles. Stars that want to stay bankable will start touting CCP-approved trash. Some might try to "stay out of politics" to avoid threatening their livelihoods, but the Chinese troll mob will crow that this is not good enough, and they will feel public pressure to actively speak out in Beijing-friendly ways. This already happens with stars who aren't trying to be political (even Chinese ones) so don't think it won't start happening on an even larger scale. 
And then we will have a whole crop of Taiwanese stars who are publicly pro-China and anti-Taiwan no matter how they actually feel. This will certainly affect public morale in Taiwan, exactly as it is meant to.

Again. Never trust the Chinese government. Ever. Not ever. Especially when it comes to Taiwan, they can never, ever be taken at face value. Everything they do is in service to their greater goal of annexation.

Oh and seriously An Fengshan can choke on a fat one. 

Sorry, couldn't help myself. 


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