Tony Kushner and Others Appeal to Senators to Ease Up on Zero Dark Thirty

The Carpetbagger reports:

LOS ANGELES— Count Tony Kushner, the “Lincoln” screenwriter, among those who believe several United States Senators went too far when they suggested that Sony Pictures should somehow correct its depiction of torture in “Zero Dark Thirty.”

Mr. Kushner on Monday was among 28 supporters of a letter sent to all 100 Senators objecting to the pressure exerted by three of them — Dianne Feinstein, Carl Levin and John McCain — on “Zero Dark Thirty,” directed by Kathryn Bigelow and written by Mark Boal. Other supporters, according to Norman Siegel, a lawyer who helped organize the protest, included the lawyers Alan M. Dershowitz, Laurence Tribe and Floyd Abrams.

“History demonstrates, in particular the 1950s McCarthy period, that government officials should not employ their official status and power to attempt to censor, alter or pressure artists to change their expressions, believes, presentations of facts or political viewpoints,” the letter said.

Mr. Kushner has been nominated for an Oscar in the best adapted screenplay category, while Mr. Boal is up for best original screenplay.

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13 Comments

  1. Jerry
    February 11, 2013

    That’s nice of Kushner, of course now it will look like he is doing this out of self interest since his film too got called on the carpet by a Congressman to correct a factual error. Prior to which he said nothing to defend Zero Dark Thirty in public.

  2. Andrew
    February 11, 2013

    Once upon a time, people need to get the hell over it.

  3. rufussondheim
    February 11, 2013

    Yeah, now that it’s too late to save it, although I haven’t lost all hope just yet. Although it’s minimal hope.

  4. February 11, 2013

    I think in the future filmmakers who make films like ZERO DARK THIRTY, LINCOLN, and ARGO should start off by reminding everyone that their films are fiction. Historical fiction, but fiction. I think the “based on a true story” thing is getting to be too much weight to bear.

  5. Bryce Forestieri
    February 11, 2013

    Awesome gesture from Kushner. Class act all around.

  6. Pierre de Plume
    February 11, 2013

    I love it.

  7. Nic V
    February 11, 2013

    ****Jerry / February 11, 2013
    That’s nice of Kushner, of course now it will look like he is doing this out of self interest since his film too got called on the carpet by a Congressman to correct a factual error. Prior to which he said nothing to defend Zero Dark Thirty in public.*****

    These issues are beginning too look ridiculous and comments about whatever anyone does at this point has gone beyond absurd. Tony Kushner had no responsibility to Zero Dark Thirty. None at all so why should he or anyone else be expected to defend it? Do you realize how much time it would take to assemble a group of people with the recognition these people have to reach a consensus? You not only have to bridge ideologies but then you have too bridge location. Then you have reach a consensus on what it is you want to say and how you want to address the issue. Those things in a process that’s described above do not happen over night. They had to be working on this for some time. Why should anyone know about the effort until the effort was realized and formalized? Truth is that anyone involved in the process identified above would have said nothing until the process was completed and the letter delivered. No one wants to get involved in something of that magnitude if it’s going to fall apart before it’s realized.

    What did you do? Did you send a letter to the Senators?

  8. Zach
    February 11, 2013

    I like that while this is a race where you have Affleck’s Representative trashing Lincoln, not only is the Spielberg not attacking other films, but Tony Kushner is even coming out in support of another film. Class act.

  9. danemychal
    February 11, 2013

    Now… it would have really been something if George Clooney, that guy who wrote and directed one of my favorite movies (Good Night & Good Luck) that just so happened to be about the challenging of McCarthyism, had been among the supporters.

    But this is just another reason to admire the hell out of Tony Kushner, whether or not he wins an Oscar (and his chances are dwindling).

  10. mecid
    February 11, 2013

    Now fuck you all who thought this controversery was created by Spielberg people.

  11. Jade Fox
    February 12, 2013

    Four for you Tony coco. Good for you. Seriously Congress and the Senate have far better things to do than worry about the historical accuracies of any movie. But hey, they aren’t call the “Do Nothing Congress” for nothing.

  12. February 12, 2013

    Now fuck you all who thought this controversery was created by Spielberg people.

    Who was that?

    I’m rooting for Michael Haneke, but it would be terrific to see Mark Boal win. What a slap in the face!

  13. Tero Heikkinen
    February 12, 2013

    Haneke, yes. I think Amour’s and maybe Moonrise Kingdom’s screenplays are the only flawless ones. I’m not too excited about the other three, not even Boal so much. Since Moonrise Kingdom ain’t winning, Amour it has to be.

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