Russian Studio Chief Says Western Sanctions Have No Impact on Film Industry

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An aerial view of Moscow, Russia.

Mosfilm's Karen Shakhazarov stressed that Russians still keenly watch Hollywood movies

Karen Shakhnazarov, head of Mosfilm, a Russian studio company that also overdubs Hollywood films for the local market, has said that Western sanctions against Russia have had and will have no impact on the industry.

"I don't think that sanctions, even if they are made tougher, will affect the film industry," he was quoted as saying by the Russian news agency RIA Novosti.

According to Shakhnazarov, Mosfilm does a substantial share of overdubbing work for Hollywood films released in Russia.

"We haven't specifically calculated how much we are making from collaboration with U.S. studios, but the figure is significant," he said.

Shakhnazarov added that he doesn't see a scenario in which the sanctions could affect the Russian film industry or Hollywood, stressing that Russians are not turning away from Hollywood fare.

"Although it is clear that attitudes toward America among Russians have changed [for the worse,] this has had no impact on movies, and they are still watching [Hollywood] films," he said.

Last week, Russia's president Vladimir Putin spoke against limiting access of Hollywood films to Russian screens, an idea that had been discussed for the last few months, alongside a complete ban on Hollywood movies.

Meanwhile, Russian culture minister Vladimir Medinsky recently said that his ministry will make a decision on introducing quotas for Russian releases based on this year's box office data.

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