Rows of recent U.S. films -- some still showing in U.S. theaters - - can be found in shops along Al-Rubae Street in eastern Baghdad. Included in the current choices: King Kong, the remake of the Hollywood classic that is still showing in U.S. theaters.
The best-pirated movies come from Malaysia, says Milad Tareq, 21, who runs the Option CDs shop. Among the more popular movies in the Iraqi capital are those starring Robert DeNiro, Tom Hanks or Julia Roberts, he says. "Baghdadis were a great audience for American movies even before the war," Tareq says.
The market for bootleg goods took off after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. Goods of all sorts started pouring across the border after the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime and the lifting of United Nations imposed sanctions. Iraq has functioning trademark and patent offices to protect brands if they are registered. However, enforcement is lax.
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