How an invading army changes from Chinese to North Korean: Reel China - latimes.com
Reel China: Hollywood tries to stay on China's good side
Without Beijing even uttering a critical word, MGM is changing the villains in its 'Red Dawn' remake from Chinese to North Korean. It's all about maintaining access to the Asian superpower's lucrative box office.
China has become such an important market for U.S. entertainment companies that one studio has taken the extraordinary step of digitally altering a film to excise bad guys from the Communist nation lest the leadership in Beijing be offended.
When MGM decided a few years ago to remake "Red Dawn," a 1984 Cold War drama about a bunch of American farm kids repelling a Soviet invasion, the studio needed new villains, since the U.S.S.R. had collapsed in 1991. The producers substituted Chinese aggressors for the Soviets and filmed the movie in Michigan in 2009.
But potential distributors are nervous about becoming associated with the finished film, concerned that doing so would harm their ability to do business with the rising Asian superpower, one of the fastest-growing and potentially most lucrative markets for American movies, not to mention other U.S. products.
As a result, the filmmakers now are digitally erasing Chinese flags and military symbols from "Red Dawn," substituting dialogue and altering the film to depict much of the invading force as being from North Korea, an isolated country where American media companies have no dollars at stake....
Come on....North Korea! They couldn't invade an island off their coast and we are to believe they will mount a ten thousand mile invasion over the ocean that will make Normandy look like a swim meet at the YMCA. There is willing suspension of disbelief but I'll believe like Sheila Jackson-Lee about our astronauts on mars before that.
...The "Red Dawn" remake follows several teenagers in Spokane, Wash., who fight invading Chinese forces allied with Russia in the near future (in the original film, the Soviets partnered with Cubans). The roughly $60-million production stars Chris Hemsworth, who will become much better known to moviegoers this May when he plays the title role in the superhero event picture "Thor."...
Oh well...hopefully they won't screw up the remake of The Bill Chill.