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Cultural exchanges essential to US-China relations

PASADENA, California, November 6 ------ At the 19th Chinese American Film and Television Festival's summit, officials and entertainment celebrities met to discuss and promote people-to-people and cultural exchanges to celebrate the diverse cultures of both nations and bring the United States and China closer again.

In an increasingly interconnected yet divided world, "fostering cultural exchanges between our two nations is more important than ever," said panelist Stu Levy, former chairman of the Producers Guild of America's International Committee. Bringing the two countries closer again by using films, television and animation is a natural way to start "because if we tell stories together, then we can help bring the cultures together," said Levy.

Panelists met Thursday at the USC Asian Pacific Museum in Pasadena and felt that Americans could gain insights into Chinese traditions, values and lifestyles, while the Chinese could develop a deeper appreciation for American culture and society. This enhanced mutual understanding could dispel stereotypes, reduce biases, encourage empathy and ultimately foster a greater sense of interconnectedness between the two nations, they said. Panelists also felt that cultural exchanges offer a platform for individuals and companies from both countries to engage in direct, meaningful interactions, which could break down barriers and overcome misconceptions and stereotypes that could overshadow the true essence of each culture or its people.

Collaboration and engagement in cultural exchanges in the form of film festivals, art exhibits, cultural performances, science exchanges, educational programs, sporting events and more have the potential to yield numerous benefits. "We can promote greater understanding through cultural exchanges like our festival," said James Su, chairman of the Chinese American Film & TV Festival and CEO of EDI Media. "Filmmaking is such a collaborative art form that brings together people from all countries and walks of life. That makes it easier to understand and respect each other's culture, values, and histories," said James Chiao, composer and executive film producer.



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