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State-run Chinese cinema has unexpected lessons for the west, and is set to lead research and development in the digital era, in happy alliance with Hollywood

By Mark Cousins   August 2006

The People’s Republic of China wants to do business with the rest of the world. The rest of the world is falling over itself to do business with the People’s Republic. The recent Shanghai international film festival showed how one industry—cinema—is trying to handle this heady attraction. Against the roar of a city of 17.5m people rebuilding itself, delegations from Mexico, Finland, Australia, France, America, Britain, Spain—to name just those I noticed—were in town, exchanging business cards, trying to learn Sino-business etiquette. Like a ball scene in a Jane Austen novel, courtships were initiated and discourse was formal. The dance…

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