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The powerful gatekeeper of China's rapidly growing film world, the China Film Group chairman Han Sanping, will be here on Oct. 30 to receive an award as the China Entertainment Visionary of the Year. He will be honored at the third annual U.S.-China Film Summit, sponsored by the Asia Society of Southern California.
When Mr. Han arrives, it appears there will be a still-unanswered question waiting: What has become of the investigation by United States officials into possible violations by companies here of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in their dealings with Chinese film companies?
Word of the investigation surfaced in April with reports that the Securities and Exchange Commission had contacted a number of Hollywood studios about their business in China.
Mr. Han, whose company is the principal conduit for China's film dealings with foreigners, said at the time that he knew nothing of the investigation, or any improper dealings.
But the China hands on this shore are hungry to know more about the inquiry. In August, Variety reported that Hollywood lawyers, during a panel discussion conducted by the Beverly Hills Bar Association, complained that uncertainty over the investigation was threatening to put deals on hiatus.
Given the enormous expansion in China's entertainment links with United States companies, including the acquisition last month of AMC Entertainment by the Dalian Wanda Group, this year's film event, to be held at Covel Commons on the University of California, Los Angeles, campus, will be a hot one. Those attending include Lewis Coleman, the president of DreamWorks Animation, who, like Mr. Han, will receive an award, and Bruno Wu, the chairman of China's Seven Stars Entertainment.
But it won't be easy to get through the very first panel discussion, titled "Year in Review in Hollywood-China Relations," without discussing the big question: What's up with the investigation?
Source: New York Times
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