×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Brazil mulls foreign pic tax

Valenti to speak out as GEDIC looks to protect 'local content'

MIAMI — Motion Picture Assn. chairman and CEO Jack Valenti is set to weigh in on a controversy over new regulatory proposals in Brazil that could include new taxes on foreign films and programming.

A 13-member consulting committee of government ministers and industry reps, known as GEDIC, will advise the government on a bill to regulate the audiovisual industries and promote local production.

GEDIC has yet to submit its recommendations, but Valenti told Daily Variety the proposals include “widely sweeping draconian and highly discriminatory measures that we think could seriously harm the film and TV industries.”

“The big problem is this is being done in camera,” he added, referring to the group’s private debate of the issues. “No one has had the opportunity to present alternatives.”

The lack of official information — and fears of being blindsided — prompted Valenti to pen a letter in June to Rubens Barbosa, Brazil’s ambassador to the U.S., outlining the MPA’s concerns.

The MPA is also worried that Brazilian president Fernando Henrique Cardoso may implement regulations via an executive “temporary measure” that would become effective immediately, rather than submit a bill for Congressional debate and vote.

Mary Pitelli, president and chief operating officer of pay TV programmers org TAP Latin America, wrote a similar letter to Barbosa in June. MPA VP for Latin America Steve Solot wrote to Pedro Parente, chief minister of Cardoso’s cabinet. Both Pitelli and Solot asked to participate in the discussions.

GEDIC member and veteran producer Carlos Barreto told Daily Variety he believes TAP and the MPA have no right to participate but are entitled to lobby Congress once a bill has been prepared.

“Nothing has been decided. We are dealing with a bunch of speculations,” he said. “Our suggestions are not radical. We are just trying to protect local content.”

GEDIC will hold a last session Aug. 20 before the government puts together the bill to send to Congress, Barreto said.

Valenti said the MPA wants to see Brazil’s local industries thrive.

“Our motives are not antagonistic at all,” he insisted. “We are trying to be helpful.”

(Marcelo Cajueiro in Brazil contributed to this report.)

More Film

  • WGA West Logo

    WGA Plans March 25 Member Vote on Talent Agency Rules

    Leaders of the Writers Guild of America plan a March 25 vote for members to decide whether to implement tough new restrictions on how Hollywood talent agencies as operate as agents for writer clients. The vote comes as the guild is in the midst of pitched negotiations with the Association of Talent Agents to renew [...]

  • Netflix Buys Chinese Sci-fi Hit 'Wandering

    Netflix Buys Chinese Sci-fi Hit 'Wandering Earth'

    Global streaming giant, Netflix has bought rights to “The Wandering Earth,“ the smash hit film which is pitched as China’s first mainstream sci-fi movie. The film was the sleeper hit of Chinese New Year — it opened in fourth position on Feb. 5 — but climbed to the top spot and has not yet relinquished [...]

  • Michael B. JordanAFI Awards Luncheon, Los

    Film News Roundup: Michael B. Jordan's Hitman Drama 'Silver Bear' Gets Director

    In today’s film news roundup, Michael B. Jordan’s “The Silver Bear” finds a director, biopic “Running for My Life” is in the works, Fox is using new trailer compliance software and the 14-hour “La Flor” gets distribution. DIRECTOR ATTACHMENT Gerard McMurray, director of “The First Purge,” will write and direct Michael B. Jordan’s thriller “The [...]

  • Kevin Costner Diane Lane

    Kevin Costner, Diane Lane to Reunite in Suspense Thriller 'Let Him Go'

    Focus Features has tapped Kevin Costner and Diane Lane to star as a husband and wife in the suspense thriller “Let Him Go.” The two also collaborated on “Man of Steel” and “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.” Thomas Bezucha (“The Family Stone”) is set to direct his own screenplay, based on Larry Watson’s novel [...]

  • Chris Hemsworth Hulk Hogan

    Chris Hemsworth to Play Hulk Hogan in Biopic for Netflix

    Netflix is in the early stages of developing a Hulk Hogan biopic with Chris Hemsworth attached to star as the wrestling legend and produce. Netflix has obtained the exclusive life rights and consulting services from Terry Gene Bollea AKA Hulk Hogan. Todd Phillips, whose credits include “War Dogs” and “The Hangover” trilogy, is attached to [...]

  • Rooftop Films Announces Filmmakers Fund Grant

    Rooftop Films Announces Filmmakers Fund Grant Winners

    Swedish documentary filmmaker Anastasia Kirillova and “Negative Space” co-directors Ru Kuwahata and Max Porter are among the filmmakers who will receive grants from Rooftop Films to help complete their upcoming projects. Kirilova will be awarded $20,000 to finish her film, “In the Shadows of Love,” while collaborators Kuwahata and Porter will receive $10,000 for “Dandelion [...]

  • Jim Gianopulos

    Paramount Chief Jim Gianopulos Unveils Diversity Initiative

    Paramount Pictures chairman and CEO Jim Gianopulos has announced that all studio productions will be required to complete a plan to enhance diversity. Wednesday’s reveal follows Paramount’s commitment to participating in Time’s Up and Annenberg Inclusion Initiative’s 4% Challenge. The name is derived from women having directed only 4% of the country’s top grossing movies [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content