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The entertainment trade magazine The Hollywood Reporter commissioned a poll of 1,000 registered voters to gauge the movie-going tendencies of Democrats and Republicans. The results will shock absolutely no one: conservatives are increasingly fed up with Hollywood. Why? “Typically, when you see a movie, it will reflect a Democrat’s values,” says pollster Jon Penn. “Republicans aren’t getting the films they want.” It’s that simple.
This comes as no surprise to the center-right “flyover audiences” between the coasts, who over the years have grown to resent Hollywood’s increasingly leftist vision fare to the degree that many have simply opted out. Weary of the din of movies and TV shows that don’t reflect their values – like director James Cameron’s Avatar, which pushed a radical environmentalist agenda and denigrated the U.S. military in the process, or Glee, which fellow FrontPage contributor Ben Shapiro calls “the most subversive show in the history of television” – many conservatives are reluctant to give Hollywood a single hard-earned dime.
The poll shows that Democrats are bigger moviegoers, and are also likelier to see a movie on opening weekend, while Republicans prefer to wait for the DVD release. Penn speculates that this is because Democrats tend to embrace pop culture more and want to be “in the know.”
The two parties also diverge in their choice of entertainment. Unsurprisingly, Republicans prefer family-friendly fare; from hundreds of Oscar winners and classics, they were far more likely to name as favorites films like The Sound of Music and It’s a Wonderful Life. Democrats favor edgier movies, choosing films like Bonnie and Clyde and The Silence of the Lambs. Among more recent films, Republicans tended to choose Secretariat. Democrats? Bad Teacher.
Majorities of both parties think movies contain too much sex, violence and profane language, but greater numbers of Republicans disapprove of them. A majority of Democrats think Hollywood films are generally inspiring and morally uplifting; a majority of Republicans beg to differ. While 62% of Democrats say Hollywood portrays America in a positive light, only 39% of Republicans concur. And 44% of Republicans think Hollywood portrays the U.S. military negatively; only 21% of Democrats agree.
Perhaps the poll’s most significant result for Hollywood to take to heart lies in the large numbers of moviegoers who hold the political views of actors against them. For Republicans, 52% report that they have avoided a movie because of its star’s political views, compared to 36% of Democrats. John Nolte, editor-in-chief of Andrew Breitbart’s conservative entertainment biz site, Big Hollywood, argues however that this is not just a matter of an actor’s politics:
What causes a liberal actor to lose conservative fans has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with class. An actor who simply goes on about the business of acting and supporting left-wing causes usually generates nothing more than indifference from right-of-center fans and can generate respect because of how they handle themselves, especially when compared to their obnoxious counterparts.
Identified in the poll as those prime examples of the “obnoxious counterparts” that Republicans steer clear of are Whoopi Goldberg, Oprah Winfrey, Jane Fonda and Sean Penn.
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