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MPAA “Concerned” About Trump Travel Ban’s Impact On Hollywood

Deadline logo Deadline 1/31/2017 Dominic Patten
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It waited over the weekend, but today the studio-backed MPAA sent out a signal that corporate Hollywood is not happy with Donald Trump’s executive order signed Friday that halted entry into the U.S. for citizens of seven Muslim-majority nations.

In a statement released today, MPAA boss and former Democratic senator Chris Dodd said the organization is “concerned about the impact of the executive order on individuals with legitimate personal and business relationships in the United States” (read the full statement below).

The shot across the bow comes following a weekend of protests at national airports after Trump signed the executive order Friday, banning travel from citizens of Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Somalia and Yemen. A series of lawsuits resulted in court stays for parts of the order.

Those impacted include Iranian director Asghar Farhadi, who confirmed over the weekend that he will not attend the Academy Awards on February 26 — “even if exceptions were to be made for my trip,” he said. There had been rumors circling that he might have trouble securing the proper travel visa to attend the ceremony. His drama The Salesman is up for the Foreign Language Film Oscar.

Among the critics of the executive order, in addition to Barack Obama, are several Hollywood guilds. It was referenced repeatedly during Sunday’s SAG Awards live on TNT and TBS, as much a part of the show as the trophies handed out.

Here’s the MPAA’s full statement:

“The U.S. film and television industry is part of a global enterprise that is enriched by the contributions of talented individuals from around the world. The MPAA is concerned about the impact of the executive order on individuals with legitimate personal and business relationships in the United States.

“Among those potentially affected are members of the creative community who cannot freely express themselves in their home country and come to the United States seeking the opportunity to communicate and enlighten. Our mission of storytelling brings people closer together and introduces us to new perspectives from all over the world. We firmly believe our country can both protect its national security and be a welcoming place for those who respect our values.”

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