CBC pulls film after calls from Chinese embassy

Written by  //  November 9, 2007  //  China, David Kilgour, Media, Rights & Social justice  //  1 Comment

Documentary follows the Falun Gong movement
James Cowan, National Post
November 08, 2007

The CBC postponed the airing of a documentary about the Falun Gong spiritual movement after receiving calls from the Chinese embassy expressing concern about the film’s subject matter.
Beyond the Red Wall: The Persecution of the Falun Gong was scheduled to appear on Tuesday evening on CBC Newsworld.
It was replaced at the last minute by a rerun of a documentary on Pervez Musharraf, the President of Pakistan. The broadcaster says it changed its schedule because recent turmoil in Pakistan made the Musharraf documentary “timely.”
However, a spokesman acknowledged the CBC has received calls from Chinese diplomats about Beyond the Red Wall and intends to review the documentary’s contents before returning it to its broadcast schedule. More

Who calls the shots at the CBC?
National Post Letters
November 09, 2007

Re: CBC Pulls Film After Calls From Chinese Embassy, James Cowan, Nov. 8.

As a professor of Chinese history at the Université de Montréal, for the past seven years my main research project has been the Falun Gong, the persecuted Chinese spiritual movement. As one of the few credible academic authorities working on the Falun Gong, I have presented my research many times over the years. … what is not hard to imagine is a scenario where the Chinese might suggest to the CBC that their contracts for the Olympic Games might be up for rediscussion, unless they checked again to make sure that Beyond the Red Wall was “balanced.”
David Ownby, professor, département d’histoire, Université de Montréal.

… The abrupt cancellation of this documentary is outrageous. Does the CBC no longer believe that its executives can vet a documentary? Does the CBC require unseen outside approval? On the eve of Remembrance Day when we celebrate the virtues of freedom and the men who died for it, the CBC should not acquiesce to pressure from a foreign and totalitarian regime.
Dr. Gerry Koffman, Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting, Toronto.

One Comment on "CBC pulls film after calls from Chinese embassy"

  1. Diana Thébaud Nicholson November 11, 2007 at 10:01 am · Reply

    Nov 10 Update
    CBC plans to air a slightly reworked documentary on the Falun Gong on Nov. 20, ending a rift that forced the film’s prime-time English debut to be abruptly cancelled this past week.

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