You may not be interested in cancel culture, but cancel culture is interested in you.
No matter how excellent your liberal creds may be, it will come bursting through the door looking for you. Just ask hoary PBS franchise, Ken Burns.
The chief executive of PBS rejected a filmmaker’s argument that public TV’s 40-year relationship with documentarian Ken Burns has come at the expense of diversity.
President and CEO Paula Kerger was asked Tuesday about an essay by filmmaker Grace Lee, who contended that public TV’s deep attachment to Burns, whose series include “The Civil War” and “Baseball,” slights viewers of color.
“We create lots of opportunities for many filmmakers,” Kerger said. Burns “mentors a number of filmmakers who now have quite established careers … and he has a deep commitment to mentoring diverse filmmakers.”
She said she “respectfully disagrees” with Lee’s arguments in a essay last fall for the Ford Foundation. Among them: that PBS decision-makers and funders have an interdependence with “one white, male filmmaker” who represents “one man’s lens on America,” as Lee put it.
It’s okay, Ken Burns’ next documentary on how awesome Louis Farrakhan and Al Sharpton are is bound to win over critics.
PBS’ older white boomer audience loves Ken Burns’ 29 part series on whatever. But the aggressive SJW mob pounding on the door is less enthused and looking for career slots. Hollywood has tossed aside boomer audiences, for the most part, and swapped them out with black nationalist narratives. Except for Spielberg who occasionally turns out one of his sonorous revisionist leftist histories, e.g. Bridge of Spies, whose only function is to remind everyone what a tone-deaf filmmaker he’s become and that Hollywood is incapable of making meaningful historical epics anymore.
And it seems to have worked well enough.
PBS though is heavily dependent on that same audience that Hollywood rejected, rather than on Netflix streamers, so it needs Ken Burns. But at some point it’s going to have to get rid of him.