While several Oscar winners and presenters used Sunday’s live ABC broadcast to promote left-wing politics, one winner took a truly bold step by acknowledging pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong — a virtual no-no in Hollywood where saying anything critical of China’s Communist dictatorship has become taboo.
Filmmaker Anthony Giacchino, who won the Oscar for the documentary short film Colette, paid tribute to the subject of his movie, French Resistance fighter Colette Marin-Catherine, while also acknowledging his fellow nominees, which included the Norwegian documentary short Do Not Split about demonstrators in Hong Kong.
“I want to say I think it’s that same power of the documentary storytelling that is going to ensure that the memory, courage, and resilience of Latasha Harlins. Horace Bowers, the innocent children of Yemen, and the protestors in Hong Kong are not forgotten,” he said. “That’s why we do this. That’s why we makes these films.”
— The Academy (@TheAcademy) April 26, 2021
As Breitbart News reported, China’s authoritarian Communist Party imposed a blackout on this year’s Oscars telecast over the nomination of Do Not Split. The 35-minute short movie documents the Hong Kong protests, focusing on pushback against a controversial extradition law as well as China’s imposition of a “national security law” on Hong Kong that effectively criminalizes political dissent.
Hollywood has become increasingly reliant on the Chinese moviegoing market to buoy its expensive blockbuster releases even as Beijing exercises increasing control over the content of movies released in its borders.
Under Disney’s then-CEO Bob Iger, ESPN forbade its journalists from discussing Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement for fear that it might jeopardize the studio’s cozy business relationship with China’s Communist dictators.
Disney, which owns ABC, has also refused to comment on reports of systematic rape against minority women carried out by authorities in China’s western Xinjiang region, which partnered with Disney on the making of last year’s live action Mulan.