Producer Harvey Weinstein thinks he can make a narrative film that will bring the NRA to its knees. Such is the power of movies, or so he believes.
Yet he apparently isn’t bothered by helping produce some of the most violent films of the past quarter century, at a time when the connection between screen violence and gun tragedies is a hotly debated issue.
Kill Bill 1 and 2. Reservoir Dogs. Django Unchained. The Halloween remake. Sen. Ted Cruz connected Weinstein to his legacy of screen violence this week, one of the few politicians willing to speak out against the powerful producer.
Weinstein’s anti-NRA film, a Meryl Streep movie dubbed The Senator’s Wife, is meant to influence how the public views the gun rights group. The producer vowed the project would make the NRA, “wish they weren’t alive after I’m done with them.”
Strong words, indeed, coming from a man who only recently vowed to explore the ties between cinematic violence and the real thing with the biggest directors in Hollywood after the 2012 school shooting in Newtown. He admitted there could be a correlation between the two.
I think as filmmakers we should sit down — the Marty Scoreseses, the Quentin Tarantinos, and hopefully all of us who deal in violence in movies — and discuss our role in that,” Weinstein said.
That movie violence summit never got produced.
Weinstein wants it both ways regarding movie content, and he’s not alone. Many actors and directors relish the creative freedoms they enjoy while saying they cannot be held accountable should someone be negatively influenced by their work. Other actors go to great lengths to change hearts and minds via films like Promised Land and Avatar, hoping their messages on fracking and the environment, respectively, will impact as many audience members as possible.
Cruz not only called out Weinstein’s film violence hypocrisy but brought up his claim that he doesn’t feel the need to own a gun for protection.
Cruz slammed Weinstein for living in “a fancy neighborhood with all sorts of police protection.”
“He says he doesn’t own a gun, but I bet you there’s a good odd that he has armed security around him,” Cruz said.