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Hollywood Conservatives: Should They Just Shut Up and Entertain?

Or is it time for Tinseltown to return to its patriotic roots?

by
La Shawn Barber

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January 24, 2009 - 12:00 am
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Hollywood leans left. It’s as certain as taxes and death. But I’m convinced there are enough influential right-leaning folks in Hollywood (Clint Eastwood, Kelsey Grammer, Chuck Norris, Bruce Willis, Jon Voight, Gary “Sirius Black” Oldman, Gary Sinise, and James Woods, to name a few) with the power to push “conservative” projects. In fact, the task might be easier if more Hollywood conservatives came out of the closet.

(What is a conservative movie? Let’s start with pro-America themes and a fair depiction of the Christian faith …)

That’s where conservative Andrew Breitbart comes in. Owner of news site Breitbart.com, part-time editor of the Drudge Report, and author, Breitbart has created Big Hollywood, a group blog featuring commentary from conservative and libertarian people in the entertainment business and political arena.

“Big Hollywood is not a ‘celebrity’ gabfest or a gossip outpost — it is a continuous politics and culture posting board for those who think something has gone drastically wrong and that Hollywood should return to its patriotic roots,” Breitbart writes in his Washington Times column.

Right-leaning actors and decision-makers do exist, though they’re not as vocal as their liberal counterparts. Perhaps Big Hollywood will encourage conservatives in Tinseltown to talk about their views loud and often. Just shut up and entertain, you say? Like it or not, political ideologies shape the entertainment culture and influence what’s produced in Hollywood.

Having said that, complaining about liberal Hollywood is pointless, but it’s easier than doing something about it. In that regard, I agree with Entertainment Weekly‘s Gary Susman:

[I]f conservative Hollywood wants to make more openly ideological movies, it should stop whining and make them.

Susman doesn’t believe openly conservative actors are hurting for work, nor does he believe “liberal intolerance” is to blame for the lack of conservative movies. People watch movies to escape into fantasy. “Explicitly partisan movies, left or right, don’t seem to do as well as those that give both sides a voice or whose ideology takes a backseat to plot and character development,” he writes.

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