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Dan Glickman served as the 26th United States Secretary of Agriculture, a post he held from 1995 until 2001. Previously he was a Democratic representative for Kansas in Congress for[…]

People see what we’re like through our movies.

Topic: Hollywood's Global Impact

Dan Glickman: America is known throughout the world largely by its film and television stars, and sports heroes. I mean you’d like to think that the politicians have that kind of impact, but the truth of the matter is that this is an industry that America has become identified with over a period of many, many, years. One of the reasons why, to be honest with you, is there aren’t very many other places that produce very many movies or television shows. I mean they produce some in other countries, but our industry is still the dominant force in terms of amount of product that’s out there. So people see often what we’re like by reason of the movies. And I recall that whenever Arnold Schwarzenegger used to travel around the world – this was before he became governor of California – he would be swarmed by people throughout the world wherever he’d go largely because of this factor. And so good and bad, America is known often by its entertainment product. And I think it’s more good than bad to be honest with you. And one evidence of that is in the last few years when we’ve been fighting this war in Iraq, and when there’s a lot of negative feelings about American foreign policy in the world, sales of American movies overseas have not been appreciably hurt by any of that. That is this overseas sales of American film track, the domestic sales of American films notwithstanding that a lot of people may not like our foreign policy. So that’s a very good sign that not only do people like our movies, but they still like us, America as a country.

Recorded on: 7/6/07