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What The China-Hollywood Deal Actually Means

China promises to bring in 14 more major motion pictures a year.

There a three significant signals here:

China accepts Westernization.  China is finally acknowledging itself as the world’s oyster.  The Chinese are in the business of idea aggregation and Hollywood movies are just one way to inspire them into action, to create their own things.

China’s soft power investment.  China is setting itself up for the future when it needs its culture to soften its superpower status.  Don’t think one second that China will sit back and passively consume Western films.  China will build its own movie industry like India did with Bollywood.  Chinese films will put its actors on the map in households across the world, bettering its image.

Hollywood’s new market. No American actively goes to the movies any more.  Netflix and free streams save us $20/movie + concessions at the box office.  So Hollywood will absolutely take any extra revenue it can get even if it comes from Internet streams.  Don’t expect the Chinese to all of a sudden run to movie theaters when they can watch them in the comfort of their own homes.  Just imagine how many Smart TVs Apple itself will sell in China.

More importantly, the Hollywood deal gives all content creators hope that they too can break into the Chinese market.  For musicians, that means more shows, for authors that means more paid talks and possible Chinese investment in scripts Chinese investors want to turn into movies.

The implications of this deal are huge for China and the content creators in the West.

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By Wells Baum

Wells Baum is a daily blogger who writes about Life & Arts. He's also the author of Discvr.blog and four books.