I like to think I can separate art from artist. However, where should one draw the line? Should a line be drawn?
I think Chris Evans is a great actor. He was maybe the perfect choice for Captain America. When it comes to his political views and opinions on social justice and society at large, I think he’s ignorant. I use to follow him on Twitter until I couldn’t take how insufferable he is.
I still like watching the Cap movies and The Losers is great fun too. On the other hand, I haven’t watched Knives Out. Not because Evans is in it, but because I’ve heard it’s just a bunch of Trump-bashing, because Rian Johnson, who directed it has TDS, just like Evans. It sounds like a fun murder mystery, but I don’t care to have politics crammed down my throat. To be fair, I do like Brick, which was also directed by Johnson.
So am I drawing a line there? I wouldn’t say I’m not watching it because of any opinions, I just don’t care to be preached at, there’s a difference. Another example is the new Alien series that’s coming out. Noah Hawley, who’s the showrunner said it won’t be a Ripley story, which is fine and even understandable, but then said it’ll be about class warfare. I have no interest in a show about the Xenomorphs Universe to beat me over the head about the evils of big corporations. I want to see aliens rip people apart.
Most recently Bill Cosby was let out of prison. Not because some new evidence proved he was innocent after all, but because of some bullshit technicality. The man is a rapist and was found guilty of it. To be fair, I’ve heard conflicting stories of the woman that was at the head of the charges brought forth. So take it as you will.
That doesn’t change the fact that I feel weird about watching anything with him in it. I can never eat Jell-O Pudding Pops again! Honestly, it’s not like Cosby was making any good movies to begin with. As a kid, I really liked Leonard Part 6, but I haven’t watched it as an adult. I also saw Mother, Jugs & Speed as a kid and I remember not liking it, but again I haven’t watched it as an adult. My opinion on both of those might be different now. I do miss The Cosby Mysteries though. I don’t know, I find it hard to be able to watch anything with him now.
There’s also the whole Amber Heard and Johnny Depp situation. Personally, I think they both beat on each other, but it’s been said her pics of markings from Depp were fake. That doesn’t mean they didn’t knock each other around.
There have been petitions to have Heard removed from Aquaman 2. I don’t know if I agree with that. I don’t like her and I think the abuse accusations Depp has claimed are true, but should someone lose a job? How often are there domestic disputes in the US alone? Yes, Depp lives in Paris or something, not the point.
My point is, domestic disputes and violence are private matters and shouldn’t be dragged out for everyone to see, just for virtue points from the court of public opinion. Apparently, Sean Penn tied up Madonna and threatened her with a baseball bat. She has later claimed those accusations are false, but there’s some truth to every story… right? Should we stop watching Sean Penn movies? Maybe we should start a petition the next time we hear about him starring in a movie.
It came out that Kevin Spacey apparently came on to some actor when he was underage. Spacey seemingly thought coming out as gay would clear that up, but it didn’t work. He was shunned for a while but has seemed to be accepted again, at least a little. People seem to like his Christmas videos still.
There’s also the Woody Allen situation, but that is full of accusations, no real proof and tons of misinformation. Personally, I think he probably was messing around with those kids, but as far as I know, there’s never been any other allegations brought forth since then. Did he suddenly stop being a pedophile? I don’t know.
Roman Polanski is an amazing director. He’s directed some of the best movies I’ve ever seen. From older movies like Rosemary’s Baby and Chinatown to newer ones like The Pianist. Even The Ninth Gate I found to be pretty good. As much as I like these movies, I do feel odd watching them. In March of 1977, Polanski was arrested and charged for giving drugs to a 13-year-old girl, Samantha Jane Gailey and raping her.
There was a deal made that dropped some of those charges, but once he learned he’d most likely do jail time, he skipped out while on probation to France and stays away from any countries that might extradite him back to the US.
There’s a special place in Hell for people like him. However, I still watch his movies. A part of me hates myself for doing it, but as I said, those are really great movies.
Sure it’s easy to not watch Ghost Dad or pretty much anything Heard is in but is that part of it? Does not watching bad movies matter? Should we make a sacrifice of movies we do like with these kinds of people in them?
I’m sure a lot of this can be chalked up to ‘times have changed’ when it comes to newer situations compared to older ones. Social media has been a big component of all of this. Anyone with a Twitter account has the chance to have their voice heard globally now.
Being virtuous is the new fad and this just feels like virtue-signaling. Are people going to make petitions every time Heard is announced to be in a new production? If it’s proven she and Depp did abuse each other, will they do the same to him?
Also, let’s not forget the whole Harvey Weinstein situation. That started off the whole #MeToo witch hunt. People were losing their jobs left and right for the simplest of accusations. It didn’t matter if there was any merit to them.
The one true thing from that was Weinstein is a scumbag and The Weinstein Company had a part in so much made in Hollywood, where do you begin? I could keep going on and posting more examples of different situations, especially from nowadays. All of this and more are around every corner.
As I said, I’m pretty good at separating art from the artist, but sometimes my morals feel tested for it. To be clear, none of this is an apology and it’s not some ‘muh feeling’ crap. It’s just a thought exercise I guess.
What about you? Do you separate art from artist? If so, do you have a line drawn?