September 30, 2009
Blame Roman Polanski for why middle America doesn’t trust Hollywood
When Hollywood’s biggest stars rushed to the defense of Tel Aviv after a boycott at the Toronto International Film Festival, it felt sweetly vindicating. But I can’t claim the same tinge of pride watching Hollywood lobby on behalf of Roman Polanski—an admitted child rapist.
In a refreshing bit of perspective, Keli Goff explains on the Huffington Post why situations like these alienate conservative-minded middle America from the so-called “Hollywood liberal elite.” Of course, she straight up blames “Weinstein and Polanski”—as in Harvey Weinstein of The Weinstein Company, who initiated a free-Polanski petition which was then signed by hotshot directors like Woody Allen and Martin Scorsese, and, Polanski himself, for fleeing from justice more than thirty years ago.
She has a point. Admittedly, this is probably not the best use of Weinstein’s time, as Goff deftly points out: “Shouldn’t Mr. Weinstein be more focused on saving his troubled studio than saving an aging fugitive?”
But even if you can’t agree with Weinstein’s support of a pedophile, you have to admire his blind loyalty—especially in a business where bonds are easily broken for opportunity. The sense of tribal allegiance to Polanski by much of Hollywood’s boys’ club is actually quite admirable—nevermind their sexual mores, the important thing is that they share them.
“My first thoughts upon learning that Mr. Weinstein was circulating a petition on behalf of Mr. Polanski were: Finally! Hollywood finds a cause the average American can get behind,” Goff writes and then adds, “When Woody Allen is coming to your defense in a case involving alleged sex with a teenager…well, that’s a punchline that writes itself.”