Time Line: Life with Valenti

A look at the key moments in his career

JUNE 1966

Resigns from White House post as Lyndon B. Johnson’s special assistant to become the third topper in the MPAA’s history.


Modern ratings system is born with four grades for film content: G, M (mature audiences), R and X. The MPAA trademarks all the letters except X. Those not submitting their pics to the MPAA for ratings could apply the X rating or any other nontrademarked symbol.


Faced with growing proliferation of videocassettes, Valenti creates antipiracy division to protect copyright owners from thievery.

JULY 1984

PG rating is split into two with the introduction of the PG-13 rating.


Initiates Anti-Piracy Hotline for reporting suspected video piracy: 1-800-NO-COPYS


X rating is changed to NC-17 (no one under 17 admitted).

JULY 1996

Calls for creation of a television ratings system. In early 1997, the system is implemented.

JUNE 1999

Valenti calls for normal trade relations and greater market access for U.S. films in China. In February 2000, forms a committee of Hollywood execs to persuade Congress to approve normal trade relations with China. Valenti is instrumental in 2001 expansion of Chinese quota of U.S. pic imports from 10 to 20.


MPAA launches more than 60,000 investigations into suspected pirate activities and more than 18,000 raids against pirate operations around the world.


FTC report charges entertainment industry with purposefully marketing violent, adult programming to auds under 17. Valenti spearheads 12-point response by the majors.


Announces that the major studios have agreed not to send out any screeners for the award season – the first salvo in the Screener War that he later admits was the low point of his tenure. A District Court invalidates the studios’ move, citing collusion.

JUNE 2004

Testifies before the Foreign Relations Committee that China and Russia are the top copyright violators and links piracy to organized crime and terrorism.

JUNE 2004

With Valenti’s backing, D.C. politicians introduce legislation that would usher in sweeping changes to copyright law and effectively bar peer-to-peer networks that trade in pirated content.

JULY 1, 2004

Valenti retires as MPAA CEO and prexy.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety