By Indiewire | Indiewire February 7, 2007 at 1:25AM
Hollywood has often been a whipping boy here, but with a new Congress in session, the heads of the major movie studios converged on the capital Tuesday to pitch their industry in the unaccustomed role of good guy: boon to the trade balance, engine of economic growth, polisher of the nation's image and employer of a big, uncelebrated, middle-class work force. So the Motion Picture Association of America put on a daylong show for lawmakers, lobbyists and Capitol Hill aides, armed with some A-list talent--the actor Will Smith gave a morning speech, and Clint Eastwood received an award at dinner--and a new study showing that film and TV production accounts for $30 billion in wages, $10 billion in taxes, more than 400,000 jobs and a trade surplus of $9.5 billion. David M. Halbfinger reports.
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