Cruz to introduce bill blocking DOD help for studios that accommodate Chinese censors

Cruz to introduce bill blocking DOD help for studios that accommodate Chinese censors
© Greg Nash

Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzMatthew McConaughey on potential political run: 'I'm measuring it' Professor tells Cruz that Texas's voter ID law is racist Schumer moves to break GOP blockade on Biden's State picks MORE (R-Texas) plans to introduce a bill preventing film studios from receiving Department of Defense assistance if they accommodate Chinese censorship of their movies, the senator announced Tuesday.

Cruz said his bill, dubbed the "Stopping Censorship, Restoring Integrity, Protecting Talkies" (SCRIPT) Act, seeks to reduce the influence the Chinese Communist Party has on American media. Under the bill, studios that change their movies to show in China would be blocked from receiving help from the Pentagon.

The GOP senator, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, asserted in a statement that the Chinese government invests billions of dollars in attempting to ”mislead Americans about China and shape what our citizens see, hear, and think.”

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“For too long, Hollywood has been complicit in China’s censorship and propaganda in the name of bigger profits. The SCRIPT Act will serve as a wakeup call by forcing Hollywood studios to choose between the assistance they need from the American government and the dollars they want from China,” he said in a statement.

The Texas senator said he would introduce the bill when the Senate is back in session.

Some movies have been edited to appease Chinese government censors and allow them to be aired in the country.

For example, The Associated Press reported that a scene involving Freddie Mercury’s sexuality removed was removed from "Bohemian Rhapsody" when the movie aired in China.

Other governments like Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have also requested Hollywood edits but have smaller economies. 

The Pentagon has assisted studios in making hundreds of movies since the 1910s, including “Iron Man” and “The Terminator,” by providing access to military facilities, equipment and experts to advise, according to The Independent.