It looks like Jackie is doing his part to tackle the rampant piracy problem in China. We get wind of the following story thanks to the professionals over at Variety:
Hollywood studios are taking their fight against piracy in China into the belly of the beast by erecting a huge billboard with an antipiracy message from Jackie Chan in Beijing’s Silk Market. Billboard features a simple warning from the Hong Kong star: “Protect the movies, say NO to piracy.”
“Chan’s message to Beijing’s citizens is direct and simple,” said Mike Ellis, MPA’s regional prexy and managing director. By eschewing pirated fare, Chinese will take steps toward “nurturing and protecting China’s movie industry, which then will be free to reach out and tell compelling, exciting Chinese stories to people around the world.” Putting the billboard in Silk Market is an ironic touch for the MPA, as the shopping area was once the place to go for counterfeit goods, including pirated DVDs, despite its location right next to the U.S. embassy.
Pirated discs have flooded the shopping areas of China, and shutting down this business will be a difficult task indeed. In order to tackle this problem, the MPA will have to have a long term plan, it may take a generation or more to tackle this problem realistically, and getting Jackie Chan on their side may be one of the best things they could have done. By getting well known, beloved celebrities to talk about the impacts of piracy; with hope and luck, the practice will lessen.
This is a tall order however, and possibly a pipe dream. Many have grown up buying pirated discs, and/or downloading films on their own. Trying to get people to buy stuff that they can get for free (or next to free) is never going to be easy. I think the best way to fight piracy is with real pirates. Fight fire with fire. Get a gang of surly lads with cutlasses and send them into the markets with minds bent on murder!