When a liberal outlet like The Hollywood Reporter posts a piece about The New McCarthyism in Hollywood, you know something is up.
It might not be about people being called out for being “Communist.” Quite the opposite—it’s a report on the trials and tribulations of being right-wing in a predominantly and aggressively left-wing Tinseltown. But that’s not news to me or any other formerly (or still) closeted conservative in Hollywood.
The preference of sophisticated opinion may be quintessential to Europe’s boutique film industry, but the blending of popular tastes with art has long propelled Hollywood’s historical success. This separation between audience and the Academy was not always the case. Films like “Gone with the Wind” (1939), “Around the World in 80 Days” (1956), “Ben-Hur” (1959), “The Sound of Music” (1965), “The Godfather” (1972), “Forest Gump” (1994) and “Titanic” (1997) all managed to be both blockbusters and best picture winners.
Hollywood, wrote author Leo Rosten in 1940, was “the very embodiment” of “magic success,” allowing a truck driver to dream of being a hero, or a small-town waitress “to compare herself to a movie queen.” Hollywood was Middle American to the core, which appealed not just to our own audiences, but also to those around the world. More.
Reality check: As noted earlier, when Hollywood types started to demand that we all listen to them rant, they were competing with every bore on the planet. No wonder their financial fortunes are tanking. Failing to understand their situation, they did it when the digital universe makes them just one alternative among many. If they haven’t figured all that out by now, they are just not going to pull out of their dive.
In a 3-2 city council vote last week, Malibu’s beachfront community of wealthy elite and majority white population became the nation’s latest sanctuary city. According to the LA Times, the move was motivated by the “privileged to stand up for the city’s vulnerable population” — meaning, the hired help these rich white folks don’t want to lose.
Still worth recording though: From Brent Bozell at Townhall:
Just as the liberal “news” media have doubled down on fierce liberal activism since President Trump’s inauguration, Hollywood is pushing the leftist agenda. Variety celebrates the crusade — that is what this is — in an article headlined “TV Gets Woke: How Scripted Series Are Confronting Social Issues Like Never Before.”
It is not that Hollywood should be political; it is that the industry must be political. Even the sitcoms need to be political. “Social media is in a constant conversation about things,” proclaimed NBC Entertainment President Jennifer Salke. “It doesn’t feel authentic to not address what’s going on in the world and what people are really talking about. I think that’s a sweet spot for comedy in general.” More.
Reality check: People who cannot learn from tanking ratings are doomed. The problem isn’t whether comedy is or should be political. The problem is that Hollywood’s politics and concerns don’t connect with those of mainstream viewers so much now. Viewers want to work and pay their debts, not to celebrate the gay lifestyle. That said Hollywood should produce whatever it wants. People are finding their own answers now anyway, especially while the internet remains free.
See also: Big Gay: Hollywood a flop as a progressive lecture series. They can’t yet force everyone to pretend we care and find them interesting, the way a prof could.
Ambitious gay rights drama flops Until progressives can control what the rest of us are allowed to watch, they will not be able to advance their agenda very significantly hereafter.
“You’ve gotta be real careful around here. You get beat up if you don’t believe what everybody believes,” the 63-year-old Last Man Standing star told Kimmel when asked about his attendance at Trump’s inauguration in January.
“This is like ’30s Germany. I don’t know what happened,” he added. “If you’re not part of the group, ‘you know what we believe is right,’ I go, ‘Well, I might have a problem with that.’”
Celebrities took to Twitter Thursday to bemoan President Donald Trump’s 2018 budget proposal, which, among other items, eliminates the budgets for the National Endowment for the Arts and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Related… Well, that settles it! L.A. Times accidentally makes case for defunding the NEA
They can’t yet force everyone to pretend we care and find them interesting, the way a prof could force students. From Brent Bozell and Tim Graham at Townhall:
They say network television is a profit-oriented business, but that’s obviously not the case when it clashes with Hollywood’s sexual politics. Last week, ABC tried to lecture America with a four-part miniseries on the radical gay left called “When We Rise,” and it tanked in ratings despite heavy promotion throughout the Academy Awards broadcast the night before the premiere.
While ABC’s star-studded propaganda finale drew two million viewers on Friday, March 3, CBS drew 6.6 million for “Hawaii Five-0” and 6.8 million for “Blue Bloods.” ABC’s “Shark Tank” lead-in drew six million viewers. This was boutique viewing for the left, the latest evidence that GLAAD (formerly the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) is a dominant Tinseltown player. Its revolution must be televised, no matter how many watch. More.
Reality check: Clearly, people don’t oppose the gay agenda so much as they just don’t care about it and won’t take time to watch. It will take a long time, one guesses, before Tinsel town “gets” the problem. Its cultural prestige is suffering because, by demanding that people listen and care, it has put itself in direct competition with every bore on the planet.
See also: Ambitious gay rights drama flops Until progressives can control what the rest of us are allowed to watch, they will not be able to advance their agenda very significantly hereafter.
The recent Academy Awards ceremony turned into a monotony of hate. Many of the stars who mounted the stage ranted on cue about the evils of President Donald Trump.
Such cheap rhetoric is easy. But first, accusers should guarantee that their own ceremony is well run. Instead, utter bedlam ruined the event, as no one on the Oscar stage even knew who had won the Best Picture award.
Stars issued lots of rants about Trump, but were apparently unaware that one of the ceremony’s impromptu invited guests was a recent parolee and registered sex offender.
Political speeches dominated the Oscars on Sunday night with winners lining up to outdo each other as they spoke out against President Donald Trump’s immigration ban.
Oscars host Jimmy Kimmel kicked things off when he fired several shots at Trump during his opening monologue.
But as the night progressed, actors, directors and designers quickly started dedicating their Academy Awards to ‘the immigrants’, spoke out against the Mexican wall and went as far as calling Trump’s immigration policy ‘inhumane’.
Hollywood’s United Talent Agency held an anti-President Trump rally instead of it’s usual pre-Oscars party Friday in Los Angeles, featuring Jodie Foster, Michael J. Fox, Keegan-Michael Key and other celebs. More.
Reality check: The other thing that the increasingly politicized Awards culture features is declining public interest. See, for example, from Rick Kissell at Variety:
Oscars Ratings on ABC Down 6% Overall, But Up in Younger Viewers, Key Male Demos
Oscar Ratings: Chris Rock’s Return As Host Draws 34M Viewers In 8-Year Low
There are doubtless other reasons for decline but here is one likely correlation we can expect mavens not to notice: If celebs want to talk to and about themselves and their opinions, as opposed to listening to and interpreting those of their audience, they are in competition with all the other bores out there. It’s a tough market.
Matt Damon’s new film about The Great Wall and zombie-dragons is the perfect movie. And by “perfect,” I mean one that will make lots of money.
Once upon a time, a group of people gathered for the purpose of making the perfect movie. And by “perfect,” they meant one that would make them lots of money. They made an action movie, because those make the most money. They decided to pit the heroes against monsters so as not to offend anyone. They made it PG-13 to maximize profits. It also needed an A-list actor because movies with big names make lots of money. And finally, they set the movie in China because China is the second largest film market in the world.
I’ve written several pieces over the last year about the government controlled monopoly in the music industry. The big boys of music — the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) and Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI) — have been spending millions to keep their power and their billions. They represent what can be called nothing other than “Big Music”. Big Music has been seeking to maintain control of their dynasty by controlling the politicians in power.
Most monopolies only exist by government sanctions, and Big Music is no different. It all comes down to legalese, fractional licensing, and consent decrees. This has been playing out in the courts overseen by the Obama Department of Justice. Big Music, like most of the world, assumed we’d be listening to music under Hillary Clinton “law and order” right now. They were stunned like every other liberal on the planet that the Trump Train has rolled into DC and set up shop for the next four years.
He goes on to ponder the short-sightedness of Big Music’s kingpins:
Wouldn’t it have been easier to just send a few musicians out to the inauguration? That would have scored a few points for their cause, but in the end, it shouldn’t matter about favors like that at all. The fact that they put their politics on full display only makes it easier for the new administration to do what is right by the law and in the best interest of the people. More.
Reality check: Essentially, like both US political parties, the kingpins got out of touch with their base, in this case, their customers. And then whose fault is it if the customers aren’t onside? To the extent that they don’t understand that the enemy is not Trump, but the internet, they won’t know how to climb back out.
From Anousha Sakoui and Yuji Nakamura at Bloomberg:
Sony CEO Heads to Hollywood in Push to Revive Movie Studio
The move to spend more time at the studio follows a tumultuous period of box office failures, a major cyberattack, the resignation of studio chief Michael Lynton this month and then a $1 billion writedown this week. By Thursday, Hirai will take a seat in his new office on the lot’s new Morita building – named after Sony co-founder Akio Morita. He will take on the mantle of co-CEO of Sony Entertainment and begin the search for a new leader at the business.
“It is all about finding the magic and making movies that excite people,” Barton Crockett, analyst with FBR & Co said in an interview. More.
Reality check: But do people think of Hollywood the way they used to? Isn’t Hollywood now mainly about itself? And you know what they say about people who talk about themselves a lot…