Leaks from the Sony hack keep pouring out.
The group Guardians of Peace claim to be behind the hack, which seems to be due to the upcoming release of the movie The Interview (2014).
The film, set to be released on December 25, includes a scene featuring an assassination attempt on North Korean leader Kim Jung Un. In response to the film’s release, Guardians of Peace made the statement: “Stop immediately showing the movie of terrorism which can break the regional peace and cause the War!”
The latest leaks from the Sony hack include a bevy of emails between Sony executives that reveal racist comments about U.S. President Barack Obama and actor/comedian Kevin Hart.
In one string of emails, Sony Pictures executive, co-chairman Amy Pascal, is in dialogue with Oscar-winning producer, Scott Rudin.
They discuss what movies they feel President Obama would choose as his favorites. And since he’s a black president, the two chose Django Unchained and 12 Years A Slave as his top two favorites.
A joke, right?
Except he’s the President. This is hardly the way you would expect executives to discuss their leader over emails, that is, if they appeared to have any respect for him at all.
Is this their subtle way of saying that President Obama would be into slave tales about his “kin folk?”
Pascal and Rudin also agreed that Obama would like actor/comedian Kevin Hart. Because presumably what black man doesn’t follow Kevin Hart?
And play basketball and have a pair of Jordans lying around somewhere?
He is the President, but he must be just like the rest of them…
Speaking of Hart, Sony executive Clint Culpepper called him a “whore.” Why? Because he asked, on Twitter, for more money to market and promote his film Think Like A Man Too, an ensemble romantic comedy film distributed by Sony Screen Gems.
Here was Hart’s response to their unwarranted comments.
As expected, Pascal and Rudin have apologized for the emails.
Pascal said, “The content of my emails to Scott were insensitive and inappropriate, but are not an accurate reflection of who I am.
“Although this was a private communication that was stolen, I accept full responsibility for what I wrote and apologize to everyone who was offended.”
Rudin said, “Private emails between friends and colleagues written in haste and without much thought or sensitivity, even when the content of them is meant to be in jest, can result in offense where none was intended.
“I made a series of remarks that were meant only to be funny, but in the cold light of day, they are in fact thoughtless and insensitive – and not funny at all.
“To anybody I’ve offended, I’m profoundly and deeply sorry, and I regret and apologize for any injury they might have caused.”
Notwithstanding the deluge of sorries, these conversations only confirm Chris Rock’s bold statement about whites in the Hollywood industry, saying how they stereotype African Americans and are closed off to hiring African Americans and Latinos. Certainly can’t make those jokes across email if the person on the receiving end is a member of one of groups the that is being ridiculed.
In the weeks leading up to the movie premiere, surely, more information will rise to the surface. The hack of confidential Sony documents has thus far included film budgets, emails, personal information of stars, and executives’ salaries, among other things.
What other news will arise from the leaked emails? What else will we find out about white Hollywood that we already knew but could not, until now, confirm as factual?
What is particularly revealing about these emails is the nature of who is speaking in the conversation.
So often the target of discussion about whites and racism falls on the shoulders of conservatives, Tea Party members, and flag-waving, gun carrying, residents of red states.
What should we presume about race relations now that we observe similar conversations amongst Californians, so-called Hollywood liberals? The free-wheeling, weed-promoting, hipsters, if you will? Don’t seem so liberal anymore, I guess.
So many private conversations take place between members of a racial group that others are not privy to hearing. When people like Chris Rock make claims that Hollywood, an industry in which he has worked for decades, is racist, perhaps we should not label his thoughts as a “rant” or as “complaining.”
If an actor wants more money behind the promotion of his film, maybe he really wants the film to do well. Why does he have to be a whore?
If Jennifer Lawrence wanted more money for her film, would Amy Pascal call her a whore too?
Who knows, maybe that will come up in the next series of emails.