Hollywood Ethics and Lindsay Lohan: Kick ‘Em When They’re Down

Here's a pro tip, Lindsay: when you find yourself in bad with Charlie Sheen, there is trouble ahead.

Here’s a pro tip, Lindsay: when you find yourself in bad with Charlie Sheen, there is trouble ahead.

If Hollywood reports are true—and when the sources are primarily gossip sites, you never know—the honchos at Dimension Films played a dirty trick on actress Lindsay Lohan. Lohan is one of the featured performers in the upcoming comedy “Scary Movie 5,” like its occasionally funny predecessors a parody of recent horror films. Lohan’s sequence has her paired with Charlie Sheen, in a spoof of “Paranormal Activity.” In one scene, we are told, Lindsay screams hysterically as if she has seen some ectoplasmic horror, when what has really upset her is having to see Lohan’s own 2005 post-“Mean Girls” pre-train wreck Disney flop, “Herbie Fully-Loaded” appear on her TV.  When the trailer for the yet-to-be-released film was unveiled, however, there had been a change in the scene to make a more hurtful joke at the actress’s expense. Now it appears that Lohan is screaming at the news that her probation has been revoked, as indeed it was just this month. Lohan could get significant jail time.

Lindsay says she was blind-sided by the switch, which holds her up to (more) humiliation and which she never approved. Inside sources say that the producers changed the trailer in retribution for Lohan’s unprofessional conduct during the shooting.

Let’s say the stories are true. OK, Lindsay behaved poorly during the filming, as she routinely does. The producers indeed changed the trailer to get a cheap laugh by mocking her personal and legal problems, and didn’t tell her about it before releasing the clip. Let’s also assume that contractually she probably doesn’t have a leg to stand on, that studios and producers can generally edit trailers and films any way they want, including ways that embarrass and humiliate actors. Let’s stipulate that Lindsay Lohan, for too many reasons to list, has to a great extent  brought and continues to bring all of her troubles on herself, through a mind-numbing pattern of terrible judgment, poor choices, and a learning curve flatter than a dead cockroach in Jose Greco’s kitchen, and thus regularly asks for, begs for, and gets awful treatment from those she works with.  And further, let’s agree that in the vast, seamy, nasty and cut-throat history of the movie business, this is peanuts.

None of that matters. The stunt Dimension pulled on Lohan can’t be justified by any of it. She is a lost young woman on the brink of personal tragedy, in financial and professional trouble. Symbolically kicking Lindsay Lohan in the teeth is pure bullying, picking on someone weak and defenseless, because you know they have neither the power nor the resources to do anything about it.  This is no different from tripping the little boy in leg braces on the playground, or making the mentally-challenged girl look foolish in front of her classmates, and then posting the videos on YouTube.

Lohan does an excellent job embarrassing herself regularly. That doesn’t make it any less cruel or unfair for Dimension to embarrass her. I know the defense some will offer: “Come on! Lohan regularly exploits her own infamy and ruined public image at this point. Why do you think the movie pairs her with Charlie Sheen? She has no right to complain!” But the issue isn’t whether Lohan’s own conduct has made it difficult for her to complain or win sympathy. The issue is whether it is ever ethical for someone stronger and more powerful to kick someone when she is down, just because she is easy to kick, she can’t kick back, and a lot of people who don’t like her will get a kick out it.

It never is.

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Source: Daily Caller

Graphic: Ace Show Biz

8 thoughts on “Hollywood Ethics and Lindsay Lohan: Kick ‘Em When They’re Down

  1. True enough, Jack. But this is Hollywood. None of those factors apply, there. And how do you explain virtue to those who make the “Scary Movie” movies and would hire someone like Lindsey Lohan and Charlie Sheen to begin with? The entire purpose of that series is utterly classless slob humor that heavily relies on parody; not only on prevalent films, but on the actors themselves. I wouldn’t be surprised if Sheen (who’s practically a regular!) was behind the little switcheroo. These movies are what they are and the participants, in main, deserve each other. That said, I have to admit I’ve seen ’em all! Anna Faris just cracks me up!

    • Sheen is completely shameless (see his gross, ridiculous, hilarious Viagra-overdose scene in the last “Scary Movie”), and as much of a wreck as he is, he’s beyond additional harm at this point. Every day I expect to read that Lohan over-dosed or put a pistol in her mouth, and she’s just 26. It’s a horrible child performer tragedy playing out in slow motion, apparently unstoppable, right before our eyes. You be disgusted with Lindsay, sick of her, mad at her, stunned at her stupidity and the extravagant spectacle, in these times when so many are struggling, of watching a young woman who had a clear path to fame, riches, personal satisfaction and long-term celebrity throwing it all away in mindless pursuit of substance abuse and public ridicule. But going out of your way to push an obviously vulnerable young woman over the edge?

      • In all seriousness, Jack, I understand what you’re saying and agree fully. You can’t really classify Lindsey Lohan as an adult. She’s never learned how to be one. That was inherent in the process of making her compliant (throughout her childhood and adolescence) with the schemes and machinations of her parents and other handlers.

        I’m the guy who covered the story of Dakota Fanning and the “Hounddog” tragedy, remember. I learned through that how these things work and have historically- to one extent or another- throughout Hollywood’s history. But never more extensively and tragically as they do today.

        Sorry if I was initially making light of it, but (as with many) I’m just sick to death of hearing of the Lohan Saga and its unending turmoils. Like you, I wish I COULD do something about it. But, aside from holding up the particulars and the ramifications of the story to public insight, little more can be done without some form of legal intervention.

        I tried along with others to do exactly that in North Carolina with the “Hounddog” case. The legal case could have been made under what was already a matter of public record and the sources of more were available- to include eyewitness accounts- IF there had been prompt, ethical action taken by either of the District Attorneys in whose jurisdiction the child pornographic scenes were made. The story of how this was blocked by them and others is one I’ve extensively recounted in my articles. Hollywood’s power, when in conjunction with the legal officials they’ve corrupted, is still all but unassailable.

        Don’t get me wrong. I grieve for Lindsey Lohan, for those who have likewise been exploited and for those still-children who are being led so as we speak. You can expose it, you can make the moral case and you can delineate the process to the public to the greatest extent that you can. I have. But until you can summon up a legal team that is willing to fight this thing through the courts, you’re just spinning your wheels. Added to the difficulties is the fact that the young victims themselves will be arrayed against you.

        Until the public is sufficiently aroused, until you can find attorneys and courts who care about kids and the letter of the existing laws and until lawmakers are prepared to make this an issue, nothing in this arena will be accomplished. God knows, if something like “Hounddog” couldn’t, what could? I dread to think. Like you, I suspect that it will take the death of one of the kids or ex-kids under highly publicized circumstances to make any dent in public opinion. In the current situation- with national disaster staring us in the face- I doubt if even that will have any impact.

        In closing, let me refer you to my articles “Hounddog: The Investigation That Should Have Been” (07DEC08) and “To Roy Cooper: North Carolina State Attorney General” (15DEC08) on my website http://www.xanga.com/STEVENPILL. If that incredible incident had been acted on as it should have been- and carried through to a successful conclusion- the power of the Hollywood Interest to endorse and maintain this system of juvenile exploitation would have been greatly diminished. Perhaps, then, the Lohan case wouldn’t have come to its present state.

  2. Is there a parallel between what the director of “The Innocence of Muslims” did and this? Not telling your actors everything about the performance they’re consenting to?

    Once, I was the co-roastmaster at a roast in college. A few of the jokes bordered on offensive subject matter that someone might be sensitive about. It was the year we did the play Fat Pig, and we made a joke about the girl who was in the running, but eventually wasn’t cast as the lead in Fat Pig: “Some people just don’t know how to take a compliment.”

    When we came up with this joke, I ran it by her ahead of time, just to make sure it wouldn’t upset her, She laughed and said it was fine. If she hadn’t, we wouldn’t have done it.

    If they’d just gone out and told her it ahead of time (who knows, maybe they did) by saying, “Look, these movies are all about the timely references, like the Firestone Tires joke in Scary Movie 2 and Tom Cruise leaping on a couch in Scary Movie 4. This sort of joke is par for the course, so don’t be surprised.” Maybe that woulda been better.

    It still wouldn’t be funny, just like the last three Scary Movies.

    This reminds me of a time some dopes made a video about something topical right around the same times as some friends of mine. Their video was way worse, and they called them out in the video description. When some of us objected, they said, “It was a joke, just like the rest of the video.”

    I replied, “It wasn’t funny, just like the rest of the video.”

    If I should live a thousand years, I don’t think I shall ever again have such a perfect retort.

    • Great parallel, Jeff. Naturally, with my unerring sense of proportion, I decide to focus on the gratuitous mistreatment of a self-destructive human pinata like Lohan in a silly comedy’s trailer, rather than on the plight of actors deceived into being in a trailer that could force them to live with Salmon Rushdie until their car blows up some morning. Yes, I think it’s very similar on the issue of non-consent. “Innocence of Muslims” is more unfair to the actors, but not intentionally cruel.

  3. I think its all a publicity stunt. And when she agreed to do such a movie she had to know that her whole train wreck of a life was open to ridicule. I have no sympathy for her.She has had every opportunity to turn he life around and refused to do so.

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