Mega-mogul Rupert Murdoch’s wife, Wendi (née Deng), is very proud of the progress her native China has made over the past few decades. “Economically, everybody is doing well; Chinese people are very natural business people,” said Ms. Murdoch, 39.
She was speaking to the Transom in the basement of the Tribeca Grand after a special screening of Nanking, directed by Bill Guttentag, on Monday, Oct. 29. The film tells the story of the Japanese invasion of Nanking, China (once the nation’s capital), during World War II, during which many soldiers subjected the local population to horrific violence.
But in Ms. Murdoch’s view, the country’s future is lookin’ bright. “It’s fantastic,” she said, looking very youthful in layered, loosely fitting shirts over this season’s hot black leggings tucked into black boots. “There are so many great, smart Chinese engineers—hundreds of thousands, four hundred thousand every year graduating—definitely, the high-tech, Internet, everything. We have more than 500 million mobile users.”
What of the Chinese government’s well-documented brutality in Tibet? “I don’t think anyone got killed there!” Ms. Murdoch asserted. “I haven’t been there recently, but today, everybody in Tibet have mobile phones and the ability to send a message.” She also mentioned the new high-tech train the Chinese government has installed in the region. “It’s good, actually, because it’s very hard to get there. I’d love to go to Tibet, but it’s like so hard to get there… you know, changing airplanes and by cars, but they’re all really, really bad. So most people don’t really go back and forth. I haven’t taken the train myself—I think probably that’s something I’d like to do with my family, take the train.”
Moving on to more domestic issues, Ms. Murdoch said that her husband is very excited about his pending acquisition of The Wall Street Journal. “He’s really looking forward to putting money into it, make it better, and get it going,” she said. “And that’s why he wanted it. It’s a great paper already, but [it needs] investment.”