China Bans Hong Kong Film Awards

VOA News
By: Hai Yan

Chinese state media plan to boycott the Hong Kong Film Awards ceremony in April, BF10A4DC-76C1-44CF-8CD0-FDB47428EAF3_w640_r1_s_cx2_cy1_cw89purportedly over the politically-charged movie 10 Years, which has been nominated for best picture.

Derek Yee, Chairman of the Hong Kong Film Awards Association, confirmed that CCTV and mainland online content juggernaut Tencent are refusing to broadcast the 35th annual ceremony, slated for April 3, after both outfits had obtained live broadcast rights. Tencent had even signed a contract and made a deposit.

According to news reports, Beijing’s office of network security issued an order to block 10 Years, an independent movie comprising five fictitious vignettes depicting a bleak Hong Kong, set in 2025, after ten years under mainland China’s control. China’s state-controlled Global Times slammed the movie as “totally absurd” and “promoting despair.”

According to some reports, mainland China will also ban live broadcasts of Taiwan’s 2016 Golden Horse Awards, following the election of President Tsai Ingwen, the leader of Taiwan’s pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

The executive committee of the Taiwanese film awards show, however, said it had not heard of the ban and it is still in talks with mainland Internet media about broadcast contracts.

Some analysts in Hong Kong criticized China’s ban as “not helpful in winning hearts and heads.”     [FULL  STORY]