Hollywood holds the moral high ground in America — just ask members of its community.
It’s no secret that the movie and television industries have more than their share of people who look down on “flyover country,” which covers basically everywhere between the two coasts. California elitists are often quick to lecture the rest of the nation, but the latest controversy appears to involve all words and no action.
After Georgia passed a “heartbeat bill” that heavily restricts abortion, some voices in Hollywood called for a boycott of the state. You might not realize it, but the southern state has a thriving movie production business, thanks in part to its generous tax incentives for the film industry.
When the heartbeat bill passed, there were rumblings of a major effort from Hollywood to “punish” Georgia for daring to protect the unborn. “Some actors and actresses, like Alyssa Milano, Mark Hamill and Mandy Moore, have suggested they will boycott filming in the state,” reported Fox News on Thursday.
Despite all the bluster, however, most members of Tinseltown don’t seem to be putting their money where their mouths are. While a handful of insiders have spoken out, the most powerful voices in the industry have stayed quiet on the issue. It looks as if the boycott just isn’t catching on.
“[N]one of the major film or television studios have commented on the issue or altered production plans,” Fox News noted. And some big names who at first indicated that they’d pull out of Georgia have distanced themselves from a full-on boycott.
“Jordan Peele and J.J. Abrams, meanwhile, are proceeding with plans to shoot their HBO show ‘Lovecraft County’ in Georgia in the next few weeks, but have said that they will donate 100 percent their ‘episodic fees’ to organizations fighting the law including the ACLU of Georgia and Fair Fight Georgia,” Fox continued.
Indeed, some major players in the film industry have hinted that they won’t be rushing out of Georgia after all. A spokesman for The Motion Picture Association of America suggested that the law wouldn’t last and seemed to urge caution over rash boycotts.
“Film and television production in Georgia supports more than 92,000 jobs and brings significant economic benefits to communities and families,” said Chris Ortman.
“It is important to remember that similar legislation has been attempted in other states, and has either been enjoined by the courts or is currently being challenged.”
Some surprising voices in liberal politics have also indicated they aren’t actually on board with giving Georgia the cold shoulder.
Former candidate for governor Stacey Abrams said she “[does] not believe it is the most effective, strategic choice for change.”
Meanwhile, Planned Parenthood Southeast CEO Staci Fox made a similar statement. “I understand the power of a boycott, but I’m not in favor of any Georgian losing their job because when women lose their jobs the first thing that goes is women’s health care,” she said.
You have to wonder where all this concern for women was when Hollywood big-wig Harvey Weinstein — co-founder of Miramax — was running rampant for years, neigh decades. Nobody wanted to hurt his or her career, so nobody actually did anything to stop it. Noticing a pattern?
It’s rather telling that when it comes to actually following through on their pledges to stand up for their decidedly liberal views, most of Hollywood has backed down. The reality seems to be that despite tough talk, convenience and money are more important to elitists.
Who could have guessed?
We saw the same thing when countless celebrities vowed to move out of the United States if Donald Trump were elected. Of course, they didn’t actually think he would win — but when he did, they all conspicuously stayed right in their comfortable American homes while backpedaling.
At the same time, it’s worth pointing out that the entire reason the film industry flocked to places such as Georgia is because California’s liberal policies have rendered shooting movies there prohibitively expensive.
Decades of union demands and Democratic control have pushed creators to red states — yet the same insiders don’t seem to have made the connection that conservatism is the core reason movies are made in Georgia.
It’s all a lot of tone-deaf posing. Whether the new “heartbeat” law stays or goes remains to be seen, but one thing is certain: It won’t be Hollywood leading any moral fights anytime soon.
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