Hollywood airheads have got to stop making “important” movies.
The Hollywood Reporter recently ran a story about the upcoming flick “Trumbo,” the 5,347th movie about “the dark days of the Hollywood Blacklist” — in the words of THR’s Gary Baum.
Yes, apparently, things got so dark, that well-paid writers like Dalton Trumbo had to have their names taken off scripts. At one point,Trumbo even had to do his writing from a Mexican resort.
Meanwhile, Ukrainians were eating their shoes and watching their children starve to death in Stalin’s orchestrated famine and Jews were being hauled off to the gas chambers by Hitler. Both regimes championed by Trumbo and the other Hollywood 10.
But Dalton Trumbo was forced to write scripts under another name for about decade. The horror.
Liberals all have McCarthy-victim envy. They long to be persecuted – provided they never have to miss a meal. So they keep making these movies about Stalinists allegedly persecuted for their “political views.”
The drama queens can’t grasp that Communists like Trumbo were not just Bernie Sanders socialists. THR says director Jay Roach wouldn’t use the script as written because John Wayne was the villain and his father loved John Wayne. So the movie ended up making famed gossip reporter Hedda Hopper the villain.
This makes it sound like the Hollywood 10 episode was a standard left-wing/right-wing dispute.
Au contraire. Even the socialists were appalled by Trumbo — even Eleanor Roosevelt had turned against Stalin by 1947.
Not Trumbo. He and his fellow Communist martyrs were apologists for two of the greatest mass murderers in history. Thus, other “villains” in any Trumbo hagiography would have to include “a majority of American liberals and progressives,” as Allan Ryskind writes in his magnificent book, Hollywood Traitors, published earlier this year.
Trumbo ferociously opposed fighting Hitler, accusing FDR of “treason,” even “black treason” (commies were very melodramatic) for giving England military assistance to fight Hitler. After Germany attacked mother Russia, Trumbo was suddenly full of war fervor, but after the war, Trumbo returned to denouncing Winston Churchill as a “fascist” for some untoward remarks he’d made about the beloved Soviet Union.
By the time the Hollywood 10 were called to testify before Congress in 1947, among those opposed to Trumbo’s “political views” were: Hubert Humphrey, Arthur Schlesinger Jr., Reinhold Niebuhr, and Chester Bowles, Americans for Democratic Action, the ACLU, Walter Reuther of the United Auto Workers, the National Maritime Union, and the Congress of Industrial Organizations.
Trumbo and his ilk weren’t minding their own business while quietly holding abhorrent “political views.” The reason studio heads, writers, directors and actors came together to purge the communists from Hollywood was that, by the mid-1940s, Trumbo and his crowd were exercising major influence over the Screen Writers Guild, the Screen Directors Guild, the Screen Actors Guild (where their influence was curtailed by Ronald Reagan), the Story Analysts Guild and the Conference of Studio Unions.
They were using their immense power to promote Soviet writers, as well as to blacklist writers who were anti-Soviet, such as Eugene Lyons. Hollywood reds pioneered the practice of blacklisting, then cried bloody murder when it was applied to them.
Thus, other “villains” opposed to Trumbo and his pro-Soviet blacklist included Hollywood royalty, such as Melvyn Douglas, Clark Gable, Gary Cooper, Cecil B. DeMille, Elvis’ favorite director Norman Taurog, Marx Brothers writer Morrie Ryskind and – as Baum notes – Billy Wilkerson, the founder and publisher of the THR itself.
Even the dilettantes on the “Committee for the First Amendment,” (CFA) who flew to Washington to support the Hollywood 10, backed away from the “10” after seeing their antics before the House Committee, which included John Howard Lawson screaming at the congressmen: “Hitler’s Germany! … Hitler tactics!” — while being dragged from the witness table.
As Lauren Bacall later said, the CFA had been “used” by “the Unfriendly 10” as she called them, and ended up speaking out on something “we knew nothing about.”
In the end, the Committee received reams of documentation proving that each one of the Hollywood 10 were still active Communist Party members and devoted Stalinists, with evidence that included their Communist Political Association cards and records of their dues payments.
They weren’t “banned” from Hollywood because of “suspected political beliefs,” as THR claims. They were banned because they were in thrall to an enemy power, no different from an al Qaeda cell operating in America. None of the 10 would so much as state that they opposed the overthrow of the U.S. government by force.
Nor were the studio heads who banned them “pressured by conservative politicians” — again in the words of THR.
With no government prompting, mostly pogrom-fleeing, loyal American, Jewish studio heads decamped to the Waldorf-Astoria to write up the “blacklist” – or as it was actually called, the “Waldorf Conference Statement” — announcing that they would “not knowingly employ a Communist or a member of any party or group which advocates the overthrow of the government of the United States by force or by any illegal or unconstitutional methods.”
Frank Rich claims that Hollywood-bashing is coded anti-Semitism. How about the half-century of hysteria toward a statement signed by the likes of L. B. Mayer, Samuel Goldwyn, Barney Balaban, Harry Cohn, William Goetz, Mendel Silverberg, Albert Warner, Walter Wanger, Joe Schenck, Henry Ginsberg?
The main point of all these “Dark Days of the Hollywood Blacklist” movies seems to be to create a vehicle for Hollywood bimbos to provide the public with idiotic quotes.
Bryan Cranston, who plays Trumbo, informed THR that “Trumbo didn’t commit a crime, yet he went to prison.”
Perhaps anticipating that attractive, but mentally disabled people would someday populate Hollywood, the chairman of HUAC actuallyread into the record the law prescribing the penalty for the crime of perjury – which Trumbo proceeded to commit. (2 USC 192; punishable by 1-to-12 months in prison).
Meth cooks are smarter.
Roach said of Trumbo, “Here’s a guy with an interesting job, well paid, a rich guy in great shape … what would it be like to park your career?”
He should check with American roofers, dry-wallers, gardeners, maids, and cab drivers who have been forced to “park” their careers, not because they are Stalinist toadies, but to provide cheap servants for rich people like Cranston and Roach.
It’s really heart-wrenching that Trumbo had to suffer the unspeakable horror of writing under a pseudonym. He was never “vindicated” – again in the words of THR – but he did return to writing major screenplays under his own name, a comeback unavailable to the Hitler and Stalin’s victims, because, you see, they were dead.