There seems to be no end to the public strife over several hot topics which have spilled over into Entertainment. Here are some of them in no specific order of priority. Just listing theses topics is enough to bring forth emotional reaction.
Bill Cosby has received tremendous public scrutiny of late, based on several women claiming sexual assault over past decades. The number of women presenting public accusations against Bill Cosby have increased. This has placed Mr. Cosby in the middle of a controversial firestorm of public opinion. All vestiges of assumed innocence before proven guilty have been tossed aside like yesterdays chewing gum. It seems the adulation and public support for his long & varied career, and philanthropy have vanished. It’s also the worst case of Internet vigilantism since the Zimmerman court trial with almost as much discourse.
Hollywood has made billions featuring antagonists and protagonists with weapons of all types in various entertainment. Thousands of movies and Television programs have featured small firearms, dating back to when the medium began. Now, in his third movie of the series Taken, Liam Neeson has come forward and has spoken out about the prolific distribution of firearms, primarily taking aim at the U.S. Interestingly, he uses the latest Paris France murders by terrorists in connection with his angry outburst against firearms; another country and an entirely different situation to his opinion of U.S. conditions. The reaction by the manufacturer, Para Ordinance, who loaned firearms to add authenticity to this latest movie, suggested people boycott the film after his speech. It does seem disingenuous to declare disgust against all firearms and yet earn an incredible salary as an actor featuring significant violence through the use of firearms. Some have leveled criticism toward a recently released film, American Sniper, starring Bradley Cooper and directed by Clint Eastwood. I suggest you follow this link to James Curnow’s excellent blog on this movie and controversy.
Hollywood has often been in the forefront of advancing a belief or a cause, yet for many, the lack of awards and nominations has led to recent criticisms. Veteran actor Samuel Jackson has said, Hollywood, by and large, still avoids dealing with modern-day racism. “The popularity of ”12 Years A Slave” is an example of a movie that distracts viewers from the racism that still exists today.” he went on to say, “America is much more willing to acknowledge what happened in the past.” The recent Sony Pictures email revelations among studio executives suggest there still is a need to progress past stereotype and assumptions. Gender and racial bias may exist in Hollywood, but if an actor puts butts in seats, generally speaking, they will be in a movie. That is often the reason you see big name actors in film roles which may not suit them well.
Since the 1990’s, Asia has become a huge market for American studios. Many of the Marvel blockbusters have included content which lends itself well toward international distribution. American studios have developed an inventory of popular films for streaming, distribution, and sales designed for Europe as well. How this will impact the reputation of Hollywood towards color / gender barriers, are yet to be realized.