At the press conference for Selma this weekend, the conversation amongst the assembled press was all about both the links between the film and the current police brutality situation and the Sony hack. For me, the hacking of Sony emails and other internal missives is further proof that Americans, at every level of business, need to grow up. Supposed adults are reverting back to snickering, junior high school students. More than blame the hackers, I blame the idiocy of these high level people at Sony! Why would you ever think it was okay to malign your top moneymakers, like Kevin Hart and Angelina Jolie? Why would you ever think it was okay to make racist comments about the President? Why is a continuing culture of ignorance and racism, being allowed and richly rewarded in Hollywood or any other industry? Here is the sorry explanation from Amy Pascal, the Chairman of Sony, who is currently at the center of the storm due to her idiotic emails:
“The content of my emails to Scott were insensitive and inappropriate but are not an accurate reflection of who I am,” Pascal wrote (via The Hollywood Reporter), “Although this was a private communication that was stolen, I accept full responsibility for what I wrote and apologize to everyone who was offended.”
Really Amy? Actually it is PRECISELY when people’s supposed “private communication” is revealed that we get the MOST ACCURATE reflection of who they REALLY are!
On being labeled a racist, Pascal stated, “I know it’s not true. And I know that doesn’t reflect who I am or what I feel or what I’ve done. That certainly doesn’t reflect this studio and what we’ve done here.”
Again, really Amy? And what is it exactly you have done there? Are there any people of color with the power to greenlight films? How many movies by Black, Asian, or Latino directors have been made with budgets over $100 million? One need only look at the lack of diversity in hiring at senior levels in studios, production offices, and on film sets to see what exactly you’ve “done there“!
Pascal does on to state: “I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy. You’re being judged on things that you said in a 10-second frame that were stupid. And that’s not my whole career and everything I’ve done. I’m concerned about that, but I’m also concerned about employees here who are being violated, and they’re scared. They didn’t do anything to deserve this. It’s very unfair.”
Yes, Ms. Pascal. When you are paid millions and entrusted with the chariman’s seat of a company, you are expected to at ALL TIMES rise to the level of a professional. Take your hands off the wheel of a car for “a 10-second frame” and it can crash! Ms. Pascal has reportedly reached out to the Reverends Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson for “healing”, which just further adds to the farcical nature of this whole thing. Honestly? How many more racists are going to run with their tails between their legs and their checkbooks out for a photo op with the two Revs? It’s a joke and further shows just how out of touch Pascal is.
Scott Rudin, the other Hollywood exec caught out in this scandal, stated: “Private emails between friends and colleagues written in haste and without much thought or sensitivity, even when the content of them is meant to be in jest, can result in offense where none was intended,” he told Deadline.com “I made a series of remarks that were meant only to be funny, but in the cold light of day, they are in fact thoughtless and insensitive — and not funny at all.”
But Scott, it is PRECISELY those unfettered moments when things are “written in haste and without much thought or sensitivity…in jest” that we get a glimpse of your true nature!
There has to be zero tolerance for this sort of thing in American business today. Hollywood has long been a bastion of racism, nepotism and other forms of childish idiocy. It is time that it stop. If there were ever two people to whom the phrase “You’ll never do lunch in this town again” should apply, it is these two! I have no doubt that, if two executives of color had been caught out making anti-Semitic jokes about key moneymakers for Sony or any studio, they would be bounced immediately. But then, for that to happen, we would actually have to HAVE two high level executives of color at a major studio, which doesn’t currently exist!