Hollywood Begins Eating its Own
Reaping the whirlwind of social justice radicalism.
For decades Hollywood, along with academia, has been one of the two prime movers of cultural Marxism in America: promoting leftist causes and narratives, undermining traditional morality and social structures, and rewriting history. Increasingly, showbiz is now being choked by its own wokeness – just as our universities are – as the social justice whiners have inevitably begun to turn on their own.
Hollywood is floundering. This past Easter weekend at the box office was the worst in more than a decade. The big studios with their mega-budget franchises (where would Hollywood be today without Marvel Comics?) increasingly have to resort to overseas profits to keep afloat. Showbiz awards shows, which have degenerated into self-congratulatory displays of anti-Trump virtue-signaling, have been failing spectacularly, posting record low ratings year after year. Trump Derangement Syndrome has caused celebs to publicly double down on their contempt for all those unwoke Americans in the flyover states, pushing audiences farther away than ever before. Meanwhile, independent flicks like Gosnell and Unplanned aimed at underserved conservative audiences are succeeding despite media blackouts and social media subversion.
Instead of engaging in some serious self-examination and concentrating on projects that might win back the American heartland moviegoer, establishment Hollywood is now preoccupied with proving its commitment to identity-politics ideology. Enforcing diversity of gender and skin color (but not of worldview) in all the “above-the-line” fields (acting, directing, producing, showrunning, etc.) has become the dominant consideration in the entertainment realm now. Actress Brie Larson, for example, says playing superheroine Captain Marvel is “my form of activism”; she has has spent almost every minute of her movie promotions slamming “white male critics” and speechifying about gender equality. “Oscars are so not white this year,” CNN announced after a record number of non-white actors won awards in the 2019 ceremony. Deadline declared ecstatically that “Diversity was one of the biggest winners.”
Like all totalitarian environments, Hollywood is also purging itself internally of anyone deemed insufficiently woke. Likeable, nonpartisan comedian Kevin Hart, for example, was pushed out of hosting this year’s Academy Awards show because of a ten-year-old “homophobic” tweet. Actress Roseanne Barr was famously removed from her own show and denounced as a racist for joking that Iranian-born, Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett resembled a character from Planet of the Apes. And the industry which never tires of making movies condemning the Communist-era blacklist has taken up a blacklist in support of the search-and-destroy #MeToo movement. Showbiz hypocrites who slandered Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh as a rapist yet who knowingly covered for, if not engaged in, decades of systemic sexual predation are now demonstrating they #BelieveAllWomen by shunning the suspects among them, even over unconfirmed accusations.
Celebrated writer-director Woody Allen is the latest target, thanks to longstanding but unproven accusations of child molestation against him. Retail giant Amazon entered into a four-movie deal with Allen in 2017 knowing full well about those controversial accusations; but then the #MeToo movement swelled and Allen expressed concerns that it might “lead to a witch-hunt atmosphere.” As if to prove his point, Amazon decided to shelve his film A Rainy Day in New York. The director has since launched a $68 million lawsuit against Amazon, whose lawyers claim Allen breached their contract by making “insensitive” comments about #MeToo. In any case, Allen has become so radioactive that one consultant told Fox News, "Any company today that would do business or be involved with Woody Allen would put themselves in harm's way and be potentially burnt to ashes as a brand." Presumably any individual working with Allen would face the same incinerating ostracism. Many of his former cohorts have already publicly sworn off working with him or expressed regret over having worked with him.
Breitbart’s John Nolte called the blacklisting of Allen an “un-American smear” by Hollywood “moral cowards”:
This is objectively obscene to anyone who believes in artistic freedom, fairness, and the concept of free expression — but look at what we have on our hands again; a Hollywood that doesn’t have the moral courage to stand up, that once again refuses to do the right thing if it means risking a backlash in the industry or alienating a potential sponsor-employer like Amazon.
Pointing out that the Communist-era blacklist was an “abomination… because innocent people were destroyed, not just over their political beliefs, but with lies — lies told by liars with axes to grind,” Nolte says Woody Allen is being accused “of a #MeToo crime during a moral panic filled with the kind of false and spurious allegations that have already consumed Oscar-winner Geoffrey Rush and comedian Aziz Ansari.” The #MeToo movement lobby is powerful and ruthless; when superstar Matt Damon, a card-carrying Progressive activist, expressed the reasonable opinion that allegations of sexual misconduct need to be “analyzed on a spectrum” because “a pat on the butt is not the same as rape or child molestation,” the backlash was so overwhelming he was cowed into a public apology.
On another social justice front: like gay and lesbian activists before them, transgender activists are now engaged in a full-court press for societal acceptance – and not just acceptance, but full-throated, culture-wide celebration. Hollywood, of course, is the key to advancing that mission, just as it was the key to bringing about the culture-wide embrace of homosexuality through TV shows such as the sitcoms Will & Grace and Ellen.
Breitbart News reports, for example, that trans activists are targeting the Internet Movie Database website (IMDb.com) for “deadnaming,” or publishing the birth names of trans actors, at least two of whom are claiming that IMDb has not replaced their original names with their new names as requested.
So far IMDb is resisting, noting in a statement that “to preserve the factual historical record,” it strives to accurately reflect “cast and crew listings as they appear in a production’s on-screen credits at the time of original release.” IMDb adds the new name to the trans actor’s page and credits, with the name credited on previous productions added in parentheses. That sensible practice is not enough for a few trans actors who, like all totalitarians, want to rewrite the factual historical record to conform to their preferred reality.
IMDb won’t be able to hold out long. Neither it nor any other Hollywood entity has the will or inclination to stand firm against the relentless, bullying LGBT lobby.
Social justice is never about justice. It is about power and payback. It is about superimposing the Marxist paradigm of oppressor-versus-oppressed on every one of society’s structures, traditions, and moral codes, then ratcheting up the pressure until they all collapse – to be replaced by the redistributive justice of the collectivist State. Like American universities, where the student revolutionary inmates are now running the asylum, establishment Hollywood has brought this on itself. It is now in the process of reaping the whirlwind of its own all-consuming progressive agenda.
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