When it comes to those who lean right in Hollywood, “a bigger bunch of crybabies you’ve seldom heard in your life.”
That’s the verdict of Vanity Fair’s James Wolcott, who uses his September column to tear apart Hollywood conservatives.
According to Wolcott, Hollywood Republicans and libertarians complain about blackballing and liberal groupthink when the real problem is that the right doesn't have enough talent to produce decent films and TV shows.
“The hate-on that hard-boiled conservatives cultivate against Hollywood is one of the few perennials in our fidgety time,” Wolcott writes. He then goes on to criticize Tim Allen, Roseanne Barr, Kelsey Grammer (“who has clocked as many failed marriages as he has TV series”), Tom Selleck, the “creaking” Jon Voight, and James Woods.
Woods, Wolcott notes, was fired by his agent on the Fourth of July, thus “giving all of us a special holiday treat.”
Conservatives have long wanted to offer an alternative to Hollywood fare, says Wolcott, but “the talent pool of creative conservatives isn’t deep enough to quench a sparrow.” Wolcott offers this in conclusion: "The recurrent wish for a return to the patriotic certitudes and moral hygiene of postwar Hollywood is an exercise in white nostalgia, which Donald Trump has tapped into for his own nihilistic, destructive ends.”
Left out of Wolcott’s diatribe is Ben Shapiro - and the real possibility that there is in fact a lot of conservative talent in La La Land, it just don’t get work because of leftist intolerance.
Shapiro, a hugely popular conservative pundit, was blackballed by Hollywood when he was on the verge of becoming a successful screenwriter.
Shapiro tells the story in his 2011 book "Prime Time Propaganda: The True Hollywood Story of How the Left Took Over Your TV".
Shapiro was born in 1984 “in the shadow of the Hollywood sign.” His parents work in Hollywood and his cousins are actors. Shapiro was a recent graduate of Harvard Law School in the early 2000’s when he was interviewing Hollywood executives for his book about liberalism in the TV industry. Leonard Goldberg, then the head of programming at ABC, recognized Shapiro’s intelligence and strength as a writer. Goldberg asked Shapiro to write a pilot about Harvard Law School.
Shapiro: “I sat there for a minute. Then the butterflies started fluttering in my stomach. There’s nothing more exciting than having a major producer ask you to write a television series.”
While waiting for Cohen to develop the script, Shapiro wrote another pilot, and this one got the attention of a powerful agent. The two had a great meeting. “I drove home singing to myself,” Shapiro recalls in “Prime Time Propaganda.”
Then, a few weeks later, Shapiro got a call from the agent. “One of our agents googled you and four your website,” he was told. “I’m not sure we can represent you, because he thinks your political views will make it impossible for you to get a job in this town.”
Shapiro would never work in Hollywood. There's no telling how many more like him there are out there.