DECEMBER 2014 NEWS: Mysterious Sony Hackers Disservice All Women

Posted: December 30, 2014 in Film
Tags: , , , , , , ,

hacked

You’d have to be living under a rock to not have heard about the hackers, known as the Guardians of Peace, who infiltrated Sony Pictures’ computer network and leaked the company’s private records, including emails from the Co-Chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment Amy Pascal.  Never mind that innocent employees were unlucky recipients of unwarranted privacy invasion, the biggest story of last week was how Sony Pictures botched the upcoming Steve Jobs biopic.

One can follow every blunder like a trail of bread crumbs in a chain of emails between studio boss Pascal and Producer Scott Rudin.   The two argued like nursery school children over the course of 10 months.  Sony Pictures optioned the source material for the Steve Jobs biopic in 2011, and by the end of 2014 hadn’t made any progress towards making the film.  But the most gut wrenching part of the story isn’t that Sony lost the film to Universal.  It’s the disgusting verbal attacks that Producer Rudin made against women and that the only female studio boss could lose her job.

Sony Pictures Classic 68th Annual Golden Globe Awards Party

Rudin became angry when his first pick Director for the Jobs film, David Fincher, was also desired by Angelina Jolie for her project, Cleopatra.  Rudin attacked Jolie in multiple emails and wrote, “…I have zero appetite for the indulgence of spoiled brats….”  He threatens Pascal, writing, “YOU BETTER SHUT ANGIE DOWN….”  In another, he writes, “I’m not destroying my career over a minimally talented spoiled brat….She’s a camp event and a celebrity… and the last thing anybody needs is to make a giant bomb….”

Angelina Jolie is the daughter of actor Jon Voight and she may have gotten a nepotism boost.  But so have Michael Douglas, Beau and Jeff Bridges, Sofia Coppola, Laura Dern and Kiefer Sutherland, and, just like Jolie, they have proved their worth.  Jolie has directed two features, and the unreleased Unbroken is an Oscar hopeful.  She has eight Producer credits, including Maleficent which made $241 million domestically and is the sixth highest grossing film of 2014.

jolie-and-pascal

Rudin further proves he takes unnecessary digs at women by offending Megan Ellison, the founder of Annapurna Pictures.  When she expressed interest in co-financing the Jobs biopic, Rudin called her a “bipolar 28 year old lunatic” and wrote to Pascal, “… if she took her meds, there’s some vague chance you can start this movie….”  Rudin must have forgotten that Ellison’s company has produced box-office and critical successes like Foxcatcher, American Hustle, Her, and Zero Dark Thirty.  Not to mention, I’m sure he’ll be receiving a complaint letter from the National Institute of Mental Health.

The release of these hacked emails is unfortunate and proves that a producer has no problem name-calling and insinuating that certain women lack talent.  It’s also a shame that the only female studio boss has messed up in a very public manner, because she is looked upon as a pioneer.  Although Pascal has admitted to her blunders in recent days, she may still lose her job.  This entire fiasco highlights the larger problem, which is if there was parity in the entertainment industry, her mistake wouldn’t seem so crushing to the argument that there should be more women in power positions in Hollywood.  The last thing women want is for people to use this debacle as a reason against having women in executive roles.  I hope that people will recognize that Rudin and Pascal are not the sole representation of their gender.

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