The case for Hollywood film as Chinese media and the call for a smart power research framework for Hollywood film

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


The paper will initially trace out the areas of interest and the state of research into China’s engagement with Hollywood cinema. Such research views the impact of China on Hollywood cinema in terms of the economic and ideological relationships between Hollywood and China as well as the content perspective while framing these endeavors as soft power and in relation to the China Threat theory. However, this paper will argue that by looking at the legal contexts of production, particularly the 2016 Film Promotion Law of the People’s Republic of China, that governs the content of Chinese domestic films as well as imported films, that smart power is a more precise and inclusive concept to understand the impacts of China on global cinema and to view such impacted films as Chinese media. Smart power can continue the perspective of soft power enacted through the content of Hollywood films, and to view the industrial/production context of global Hollywood films that essentially creates such messages in the films in terms of both sharp power, where self-censorship is the product, and can view China’s laws and policies as hard power. With the application of smart power, each aspect of film production, including the laws, rules and regulations, and content, of films should be viewed in more detail and in new perspectives than previously done so. Future academic analysis of China’s impact on global Hollywood cinema should explore the applicability of the emerging concepts from political and social sciences such as smart power and sharp power to understand both the means, methods and impacts of China on global Hollywood cinema.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Event72nd Annual ICA Conference - Paris
Duration: 16 May 2022 → …


Conference72nd Annual ICA Conference
Period16/05/22 → …


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