Why Trump’s New Visa Restrictions Won’t Have Much Impact on Hollywood

J. Clara Chan

The Trump administration’s new visa restrictions announced on Monday won’t have much effect on Hollywood — but the tech industry and academia will be harder hit, according to at least one immigration attorney. Most of the foreign workers seeking visas in Hollywood apply for O-1 visas, according to Michael Piston, a senior attorney at the Immigration Law Office of Los Angeles. O-1s, which are not included in the new visa suspensions, go to individuals with “extraordinary ability or achievement in the sciences, arts, education, business, athletics, or extraordinary recognized achievements in the motion picture and television fields, demonstrated by sustained national or international acclaim, to work in their field of expertise,” according to the State Department’s website. Some Hollywood corporations might feel an impact with the restrictions to L-1 visas, which allow companies to transfer foreign workers to U.S. offices, Piston said, noting that it wouldn’t be disproportionate in comparison to any other industry with large, multinational companies. “Sony, for example, … might bring across their multinational managers or somebody who has some knowledge of, perhaps, some patented software that they’re using in their system, but it would not be anything … that you would see more of in the...

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