September 19, 2014
BEIJING (AP) - Rights activists have criticized a Hollywood studio for filming a buddy comedy in an eastern Chinese city where a blind, self-taught activist lawyer is being held under house arrest and reportedly beaten.
Relativity Media is shooting part of the comedy "21 and Over" in Linyi, a city in Shandong province where the activist Chen Guangcheng is being confined in his house, surrounded by police and thugs.
A studio press release touted its close relationship with local government officials. It quoted Linyi's top Communist Party official Zhang Shajun is quoted as calling Relativity Media's chief executive Ryan Kavanaugh a "good friend."
Relativity Media declined comment.
Authorities have turned Chen's village of Dongshigu in Linyi into a no-go zone.
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