Hollywood Has Become Divided Over Israel-Gaza War, And It’s Getting Ugly
The news that Susan Sarandon and Melissa Barrera have been dropped and fired over statements related to the raging war between Israel and Hamas has shone spotlight on the challenges Hollywood is facing over an extremely divisive geopolitical problem.
Talent agency UTA has dropped Sarandon after she made controversial comments at a pro-Palestine rally in New York on November 17. She told protesters to have conversations with Jewish Americans, who don’t feel safe amid the rise of antisemitism in the US.
Muslim American journalist Asra Nomani responded, posting on X: “Please don’t minimise the experience of Jewish Americans by sanitising the hell that it is for Muslims living in Muslim countries and vilifying America for the life – and freedoms – she offers Muslims like my family.”
UTA dropping Sarandon is another instance in recent weeks of talent agencies making tough decisions when it comes to clients making public statements on the brutal violence engulfing almost the entirety of the Middle East since October 7.
Is Jenna Ortega Not Returning For ‘Scream VII’?
Variety broke the news that Spyglass Media Group had dropped Barrera from the cast of ‘Scream VII’. She was reportedly fired for showing support for Palestine. On an Instagram story, she wrote: “I too come from a colonised country. Palestine WILL be free.”
In another post, she noted: “Gaza is currently being treated like a concentration camp … People are still silently watching it all happen. This is GENOCIDE & ETHENIC CLEANSING.” Later on, a statement from Spyglass read: “We have zero tolerance for antisemitism.”
Fans have vowed to boycott ‘Scream VII’. Others have called for the rest of the cast, including Jenna Ortega, to walk off the project. Last week, Deadline reported that Ortega isn’t expected to return for the shooting, citing sources and noting that had nothing to do with Barrera’s firing.