The Pros and Cons of Hollyweird

Today’s film industry never ceases to astound me. A recap on today’s tweets heard ’round the world.


It was announced that the courts could not in fact ask “The Central Park Five” film team (Ken Burns, Sarah Burns and David McMahon) to turn over any footage about the controversial case due to independent journalistic privilege. I saw this film at Telluride and walked away angry as hell that this important piece of American history was brand new to me. Spoiler Alert: The Big Apple does not come off looking good at all.

The “Five” men are are suing the city and I’m pretty sure we all know why the NYC wants to get their hands on the film. It’s been an ongoing battle for these filmmakers but now I think it’s safe to say the little guys won this round.



Good grief. Sometimes you read news that makes you physically shake your head. Emad Burnat receives one of the highest filmmaking honors on the planet (from an American film institution) and was detained at the airport last night because Palestine can’t possibly be up for an Oscar? Thank goodness documentarians stick together. A couple of calls to Michael Moore later and that nonsense was shut down quick. What broke my heart after I read the story was Emad’s reaction:

“Although this was an unpleasant experience, this is a daily occurrence for Palestinians, every single day, throughout [t]he West Bank. There are more than 500 Israeli checkpoints, roadblocks, and other barriers to movement across our land, and not a single one of us has been spared the experience that my family and I experienced yesterday. Ours was a very minor example of what my people face every day.”

Maybe the airport security folks picked up a copy of ARGO before their shift. Who knows? What a warm welcome for the director of the first Palestinian documentary ever nominated for the Oscar. 5 BROKEN CAMERAS is currently on Hulu Plus and Netflix so let’s redeem ourselves, America.

It was also confirmed the team behind Best Foreign Film nominee, WAR WITCH, overcame visa obstacles and will be able to bring 16 year-old Congolese actress Rachel Mwanza to the U.S. for the Oscars.

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