The new James Bond movie ‘Spectre’ offered Sony $20 Million in Tax Breaks to make Mexico look like a better country.
In a new PR movie, Mexico is trying to convince people to overlook the 100,000 people murdered in Mexico since 2006 in the country’s brutal drug war.
A new report published by TaxAnalaysts.com revealed that MGM and Sony producers received up to $20 million in tax incentive in order to show Mexico in a brighter light in the latest James Bond movie, titled “Spectre.” In return Mexico demanded changes to the movie’s script and cast that would present the country in a positive light following the recent acts of violence sparked international outrage.
From Latin Post:
Included in Mexico’s list of demands was the request that the villain be played by a non-Mexican actor, for the assassination target to be changed from the mayor of Mexico City to be an international official and that Mexican police were replaced by a “special force.” In addition, officials also requested that a “known Mexican actress” be casted to play the “Bond girl.” According to the Los Angeles Times, Mexican actress Stephanie Sigman of the hit “Miss Bala” was announced as “Bond girl” Estrella.
Initially, Mexico was supposed to be featured only in the first few minutes of the movie. However the Mexican government was willing to give Sony $14 million in exchange for those changes. An additional $6 million offered to producers to replace a cage fighting scene with footage of Mexico’s popular Day of the Dead holiday and highlighting Mexico City’s “modern” skyline.
The report also states that then-Sony Chair Amy Pascal advised the filmmakers to “add whatever travelogue footage we need in Mexico to get the extra money.”
But is this normal for a country to pay so much money to change a movie? Forbes say this is business as usual.
You may think its cynical that Mexico thinks that a single 007 action scene is going to reverse years of negative publicity stemming from drug violence. But the notion that anything untoward has occurred is, I would argue, a little naive or perhaps looking for scandal where none exists. Considering that Hispanic-American women are a huge growing market in theatrical moviegoers, I think the only outrage here is that Sony presumably only cast a Mexican Bond girl for tax incentives.