Some background is in order.
The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts And Sciences invited 928 artists to join the Academy in a rough equivalent of packing the Supreme Court. The idea is to get nominees and winners of Academy Awards that will be sufficiently “diverse”—merit is not the primary concern here—to avoid criticism from minority activist groups of all kinds, colors and agendas, as future Academy Awards honor tribes and agendas, rather than, you know, movies. What fun.
The Academy also kicked director Roman Polanski out, only a few decades after he was convicted of raping a juvenile actress and fled the country, as it installed (in December) a new code of conduct for its members now that sexual harassment is officially (but not actually) taboo in the film industry, thanks to Harvey. We are told that the Academy consulted experts and ethicists. Really? For this is boilerplate junk:
“The Academy is categorically opposed to any form of abuse, harassment or discrimination on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, disability, age, religion, or nationality. If any member is found by the Board of Governors to have violated these standards or to have compromised the integrity of the Academy by their actions, the Board of Governors may take any disciplinary action permitted by the Academy’s bylaws, including suspension or expulsion.”
Academy CEO Dawn Hudson emailed all members last week, reiterating:
“Academy membership is a privilege offered to only a select few within the global community of filmmakers. In addition to achieving excellence in the field of motion picture arts and sciences, members must also behave ethically by upholding the academy’s values of respect for human dignity, inclusion, and a supportive environment that fosters creativity. There is no place in the academy for people who abuse their status, power or influence in a manner that violates recognized standards of decency.”
All 8,427 members will be expected to abide by the new guidelines with “will be” the key phrase. Obviously many, many of the current members have violated—are violating, probably will violate—these ill-defined standards. Why has Polanski been singled out for expulsion, and not, for example, Casey Affleck? Where was due process? Why was Polanski punished for conduct that occurred long, long before the standards were announced? How is that fair?
Forget it, Jake..it’s Hollywood. Still, Polanski is suing the Academy, and he has a good case.
Then, inexplicably, or perhaps too explicably, the Academy invited French actress Emmanuelle Seigner to join its membership. She is Polanski’s wife. Is she a major artist, a significant artist, a worthy member? Hardly. Is there any good reason she should have been invited, other than the fact that she is female, and Men Bad/Women Good is the current motto in Progressive Land, and that she would provide the fugitive director of “Rosemary’s Baby” a way to have influence in the Academy without embarrassing it?
But the rapist-loving starlet, for whom “minor film star” would be an exaggeration, rejected the device, and wrote this masterpiece of ethics cluelessness:
“I have always been a feminist. But how can I ignore the fact that a few weeks ago the Academy expelled my husband, Roman Polanski, in an attempt to appease the zeitgeist – the very same Academy which in 2002 awarded him an Oscar for “The Pianist”! A curious case of amnesia! The Academy probably thinks I am enough of a spineless, social climbing actress that I would forget that I have been married to one of the world’s greatest directors for the past 29 years.”
- She’s a feminist who married and is still marries an unapologetic child rapist. We need a new word for such “feminists.” How’s “Clinton Feminists”?
- How does the fact that the Academy recognized Polanski’s art require it to tolerate or approve of his private and professional conduct? Like so many others, she apparently doesn’t know what hypocrisy is. If a serial killer directed the best movie of the year, that serial killer should receive the Best Director prize. To be fair, the actress’s confusion extends to allegedly keener minds, like scientists, as discussed here. See, Mrs. Polanski, hypocrisy is a woman claiming to have been a “feminist for years” while she defends an admitted child rapist whom she lives with.
- The fact that a feminist has been “married to one of the world’s greatest directors for the past 29 years” despite him being a rapist and serial sexual abuser proves that she is a spineless, social-climbing actress.