Korean Movies Face Beijing International Film Festival Ban: Report

China’s unspoken ban on Korean entertainment will extend to April’s Beijing event, one report says. 

The Beijing International Film Festival may have participation from numerous countries, but the Republic of Korea (South Korea) won’t be one of them in 2017, according to a report by the Yonhap News Agency.

Several South Korean films were invited to the festival but will not receive screening time, Yonhap said, citing sources.

The current unspoken ban on Korean entertainment products in China is the result of the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), a US-made missile defense system that both the governments of South Korea and the United States believe is necessary to protect the peninsular country against possible missile attack by the neighboring Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), or North Korea.

China has opposed the THAAD deployment from the outset, believing that the system could be used against it as easily as North Korea.

Hollywood should take note that the current freeze on Korean films, television, and popular music could similarly be employed against American entertainment if a trade war or other dispute between China and the US emerged.

Korean entertainment products, including TV dramas, pop music, and movies have enjoyed wild popularity in China until the recent government crackdown.

The Beijing International Film Festival runs from April 16-23, and will feature screenings of the entire The Fast and The Furious series and the entire Pirates of the Caribbean, along with showings of Academy Award winner for Best Picture Moonlight.