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by Jay A. Fernandez
August 31, 2012 12:35 PM
136 Comments
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COMMENTARY: After His Republican National Convention Speech, Is Clint Eastwood 'Unforgiven'?

As far as Hollywood is concerned, Clint Eastwood may have just turned “Unforgiven” from his crowning achievement as a director into the attitude that buries what may have been left of his career.

It’s hard not to wonder if Eastwood’s surprise appearance at the Republican National Convention Thursday night will affect his relationships in Hollywood. For a long time, Eastwood has had the respect of moviegoers and industry colleagues alike, despite his political beliefs. Money and talent trump most anything. And yet, he may have just crossed a line.

Does Beyonce now drop out of Eastwood’s planned remake of “A Star Is Born?” Does his new film, the baseball drama “Trouble With the Curve,” tank at the box office or gain audiences on the right? How will the RNC stunt affect his relationship with Warner Bros.? It was only a few weeks ago that WB chairman Barry Meyer threw a fundraiser for First Lady Michelle Obama at his home, along with Warner Bros. Pictures Group president Jeff Robinov. Perhaps Meyer’s playing both sides, but still, how does he watch that strange performance and not have it in his head every time he meets with Eastwood going forward?

Besides, an 82-year-old man talking to someone who isn’t there? Isn’t that a little too on-the-nose for a party of old white men who come off as batty at best, deliberately ignorant at worst? Yikes. That “big tent” is already the size of a cocktail napkin. Politically speaking, Eastwood has always been conservative, even held office as a Republican official as mayor of Carmel-by-the-Sea in the 1980s. But to step up in such a hammy, unprofessional fashion for that cause? Again: Yikes.

And even if Eastwood’s relationships in the industry don’t take a hit, it’s hard not to imagine that he just put a giant asterisk on his resume that will now be most prominent when he passes, instead of the focus being on the great work he has done as a filmmaker. To think that he’s been of voting age since Eisenhower, and he only decided to put his credibility on the line now? For Mitt Romney?

But my real question is a bigger, more personal one: How does an artist who has shown such intelligence and humanism in the last two decades as a filmmaker step out and be so childishly disrespectful and blindingly crass in his criticisms of a sitting president on such a public stage? This is what perplexes, saddens and angers me about the post-Clinton political right: We can — and will, and should — debate policy all day long, but no one is compelled to do it disrespectfully, dishonestly, disgustingly. That’s a personal choice.

And any party that rallies its passion under the kind of unpatriotic condescension represented by Sarah Palin’s “How’s that whole hopey-changey thing working for you?” isn’t deserving of our attention, let alone power. What Eastwood did was add fuel to a raging fire — of confusion, of desperation, of bitterness, of, yes, racism — that too many other civilized citizens already find impossible to put out. Eastwood took very public sides in an ugly fight. And he didn’t have to. It’s hard to reconcile that with the understanding and compassion he often brings to people with his movies.

As a director, Eastwood is famous with actors and other collaborators for doing the fewest number of takes possible — don’t waste a bunch of time and resources if you can get it right the first time. But this is one instance where a second take — or a full rewrite — could have saved a career.

136 Comments

  • Ronnie | February 7, 2013 11:19 PMReply

    Honestly I think Hollywood is a has been. They never make anything new with all their movies being repeats from the past. Hollywood was at its height back in the Golden Era, but the real ones making movies now are the independents. Who really cares what Hollywood thinks with their radical ideologies of what they think is right. Clint Eastwood is a legion and there is nothing Hollywood can do to break him. If anything Hollywood needs him not the other way around. Liberals are bias anyways. If the country, the actual American people had it their way we would be a Republic nation with a Republican in office; however since the media and Hollyweird likes to stick their two cents in they are the ones that control it now, not the people.

  • Sandy Murray | September 30, 2012 11:00 AMReply

    Clint Eastwood is a great American and entitled to his opinion, remember, "free speech". I have never seen more self righteous liberal idiots in my life. Hollywood is the most hypocritical place in the world. They spends millions on homes, vacations, clothes and cars, but feel the need to impose their judgment on anyone who does not agree with their liberal, progressive point of view. They are the rich in this country with much more money than they deserve, but hey, that is their right. Just don't tell me to pledge allegiance to Obama and I won't tell you that most of your films are horrendous. So keep on living in your fake, plastic world and leave me to my real one. The day you pay for my mortgage, vacation and groceries, then maybe I will listen to your blather. Until then, Shove it.

  • Rebecca Mobley | September 23, 2012 2:19 AMReply

    One more thing.........We have had to tolerate people like yourself and the hollywood crazies.
    I believe Obama will go down in history as starting the 2nd CIVIL WAR having nothing to do with black or whites skin color. He has fed the fear and the anger and disagreements. He has stoked the fires of division for personal gain. He is not a Statesman with integrity and love of country. In the end he may break this United States apart into two nations.

  • Rebecca Mobley | September 23, 2012 1:30 AMReply

    Your Jay A Fernandez---I have never heard of you....now after this article ....I will never read anything else you write.....Hollywood is going to do what???......The people that buy the tickets are more important than you or the liberal actors who pretend to be someone else for a living....If you think you will win this one, I feel sorry for you. You may be the one never to be heard of again. He's someone loved by the people. Good luck surviving your assination of Clint.

  • Mightycline | September 16, 2012 8:55 AMReply

    Clint Eastwood is and always will be one of the best and it matters not what the lib's say or think of him and his career is as on track as ever. Can't wait to see his next film, with anybody in it. Lib's never made the industry and they cannot sustain it.

  • what if | September 10, 2012 1:27 PMReply

    What would the reaction had been if a universally beloved actor that was up in age had done the same thing at a DNC to a sitting Republican President? The right would have exploded with rage about how the liberal Hollywood elites have no respect for the office. There would have been organized protest and dvds would be burned in the street. Lets not forget the Dixie Chicks who had the audacity to say they were ashamed to be from the same state as Bush. To this day they suffer the repercussions. What are the consequences of telling a sitting President to go F himself?

  • Nico | September 8, 2012 12:11 AMReply

    Indont know but I know Jay Fernandez is a major phucctard

  • Mightycline | September 16, 2012 8:57 AM

    hanks for the reminding of the Dixie Chicks. I had forgotten they even exited, whee are they now? School teachers in Illinois???

  • Mark81150 | September 7, 2012 4:05 AMReply

    You have to be the most singularly ignorant liberal since Jimmy Carter. To write this asinine statement without a shred of awareness at the irony of a LIBERAL... WHINING ABOUT "RESPECT"?.............

    ["This is what perplexes, saddens and angers me about the post-Clinton political right: We can — and will, and should — debate policy all day long, but no one is compelled to do it disrespectfully, dishonestly, disgustingly. That’s a personal choice."]

    So is being deliberately ignorant of YOUR sides vile, nasty, disrespectful, dishonest, falsehood a second, two faced bigotry and hatefullness to ANY opposition to their apparently Divinely inspired perfectness... Your parade of clowns has smeared, slandered and condescended to half this country for decades, rooted for our LOOSING two wars, been piggishly disrespectful to OUR presidents, shoveled manure and hate with all the grace of a Marxist college undergrad carrying a sign at a protest.. "frag your officers"...... you really found Clint's touch of genius so over the line?

    Really?.... REALLY?

    go have a good cry then... there is a vast sea of Americans hurting out here, and we're sick of the country's pain being a distant second to the mancrush of the liberal elites... He failed us, and you are oh so worried about OUR tone?

    You gave to be either deaf dumb and blind....... or just ragingly in denial at the bitter division this president has sown.. the hypocrisy of your opinion piece is so thick you could build a house on it.

    We're sick of the nasty far left lunatics taking over a party, and purging any voices of reason within it.. Artur Davis ring a bell?... Big Tent among democrats is a JOKE.. My wife left your party .. for the same reasons as Davis, the nasty bitter far far left hunting and purging any opposing views, while scraming "diversity".. in everything EXCEPT thought.. just try and deviate from Obama dogma in your party.. just try... and see the hatred pour out.

    The only ones needing self examination after this most divisive of presidents, the most bitterly nasty.. cruel, corrupt and disdainful of all voices but his own.. are the koolaid sipping liberals like you.. who see "disrespect" of your president as a high crime... and the smearing of ours as just a day at the park..

    Buy a mirror... the hater you're looking for is inside.

  • StewartIII | September 6, 2012 8:39 PMReply

    NewsBusters: Clint Eastwood's Critics Start to Root for His Next Film to Flop
    http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tom-blumer/2012/09/06/clint-eastwoods-critics-start-root-his-next-film-flop

  • Nick | September 5, 2012 8:30 AMReply

    RACIST?! HOW?! So everyone who criticizes a black president is racist now?

  • AWESOMESAUCE:) | September 4, 2012 4:01 PMReply

    I fully 150 % Clint Eastwoodf in what he said at the RNC !! It was totally not racist and IT WAS WONDERFULLY DISRESPECTFUL TO OBAMA!! =]]]
    Obama deserves to be disrespected! He disrespects anybody who stands in his way, but more importantly, he disrespects OUR MILITARY!
    Clint Eastwood did a beautiful thing that not many people would do !!
    and I fully support him and applaud him for what he said at the RNC !
    I LOVE CLINT EASTWOOD ! <3

  • ccinstlouis | September 21, 2012 5:00 PM

    How does the president disrespects the country and the military? I'm sitting down for this answer. Clint Eastwood should have had enough class to declined to act like a fool for Mittens and the RNC. That's why the screening of his new movie was all empty chairs.

  • awesomesauce:) | September 4, 2012 4:02 PM

    I fully 150% SUPPORT Clint Eastwood **** Stupid phone!!!

  • Arthur Rosson Jr. | September 4, 2012 1:04 AMReply

    As a member of one of filmdoms most prolific families from its begining,Clint I would debate you anywhere,anytime,anyplace on your remarks at the GOP convention,where is your thinking and what were you trying to do?My dad, a demo from way back and Hal a republican,except when FDR was alive,whom was the only motion picture cameraman allowed to photograph the president the last 2 years of FDR's life,they both would question your stance on the issues of today,you are to good of a film maker to have done what you did at the GOP convention,most of all of your directing is in the same perspective of my dads work,starting in 1918 thru 1960.

    Arthur Rosson Jr.

  • Mightycline | September 16, 2012 9:08 AM

    You have a father to be proud of. Nobody ever know FDR was a complete cripple and that must be due to your dad's fine camera work of exclusion. I'd be proud too. My dad built war planes for our pilots and your dad did pilots of a person that should have been president for just 8 years. Thank God for Presidential Term Limits, we might have Obama forever. Not in your lifetime.

  • Justified | September 3, 2012 11:27 PMReply

    How was that rasist?! Your an idiot.

  • Michael Freedman | September 7, 2012 11:51 AM

    "You're" an idiot, idiot.

  • April Skelton | September 3, 2012 11:11 PMReply

    I loved the Clint Eastwood segment of the recently held RNC. I think he spoke for many of us. obama has failed the country. In his delusional state, obama fails to see the truth of what he and his administration have done to this great nation. I personally believe he will be remembered as the worst president America has ever had. I respect the office that he holds but I have no respect for the man. His dream for America falls short of mine. I think Clint Eastwood will be remembered as a great patriot and I think if John Wayne were alive today - he would be standing in strong support of Clint Eastwood. The good, moral people of Hollywood will embrace Clint Eastwood. The rest - they can continue to wade through the moral decadence in thigh high boots with their eyes and ears closed.

  • versionthirteen | September 3, 2012 10:15 PMReply

    Eastwood nailed that bitch to that chair.

  • Mightycline | September 16, 2012 9:10 AM

    Eastwood nailed that bitch to that chair. I am loving it. Thanks.

  • Obviously | September 3, 2012 3:34 PMReply

    It is impossible to see how merely stating the obvious, that Obama is a failed president, can hurt someone's career unless Hollywood is as insular, partisan, close-minded and ignorant as everyone says they are. It is not like Clint said that Obama took an avowed racist like Jeremiah Wright for his spiritual mentor or that he idolized Critical Race Theorists. It is not like he accused Obama of being economically illiterate and innumerate. It is not like he pointed out that Obama has not met with his cabinet in months, could not garner a single vote from his own party for his laughable attempt at a budget and has spent all of his time in office campaigning. All of that would be true but apparently the definition of a racist in Hollywood is anyone who criticizes a black guy in even the mildest of fashions. This is why the people in the movie industry are held in such widespread contempt. They just aren't very bright and they are belligerent about it when their idiocy is pointed out to them. That is also why Clint was so very, very mild in his criticism. It is because he knew how dense the people in Hollywood are and how little they know about politics, economics... or anything at all really.

    I think Clint also knew the commercial he did that played as an advertisement for Obama during the Super Bowl damn near destroyed his legacy. At his age he doesn't have a lot of time to correct such mistakes. Andy Griffith went to his grave in shame for his peddling of Obamacare and he isn't around to undo the damage. No one wants to go out that way. I don't think Clint wanted to be on the wrong side of history and I don't think he wanted to be associated with all of the other idiots running around Hollywood these days. Who can blame him in that?

    I read this article as merely confirmation of the sort of totalitarian, group-think idiocy that Hollywood engages in. They know they can't win an argument on the merits so you get implicit and explicit threats to someone's career. Meanwhile Spike Lee, Samuel Jackson and Morgan Freeman can make asses of themselves repeatedly with disgusting and virulently racist behavior but that is apparently perfectly acceptable.

    Jay Fernandez is not a person. He/she is a caricature of the sort of completely brain dead liberal that runs around spouting whatever they are told to say in service of the powers that be. It would never occur to them in a million years to speak truth to power like Clint did.

    But that is the very definition of the modern leftist mindset. Who else would buy all of the empty hopey-changey BS slogans which were just an excuse to concentrate even more power in the hands of a few? How is that working out for you guys? Because I've got to tell you, having someone who is against everything that made America great in the White House has been a nightmare for the rest of us. We thought we were safe from that sort of banana republic mindset but boy, were we wrong. I know you guys are delusional but we are at the breaking point here and we need you to come back in off the ledge and quit flacking for the totalitarians.

    You can start by calling Sean Penn to account for propagandizing for Chavez and you can finish by telling Morgan Freeman that he may be a great actor but that doesn't prevent him from also being a racist sack of sh!t and that there is a price to be paid for such behavior. Until you take such obviously needed steps why the hell should we listen to anything you have to say about Clint? Indeed, your anger at him just makes it all the more likely he is right given your complete lack of morality or decency in every other area.

  • dj | September 3, 2012 9:31 AMReply

    Hey guy just listen, you just making noise out all this, this guy has made an impression, obama sucks and the guy just spill it out. Clint is an icon and does not need anybodys approval, come off it. stop politking man

  • andy gossard | September 3, 2012 3:16 AMReply

    hey listen mr hernandez you faggy little beaner. clint doesnt need saving a career,he's saved lots of cash. he doesnt need beyonce washington knowles, he could retire. he can make indy films. and he doesnt need the approval of liberal little locos like you. where do you sissified little liberal tacos come from anywsy? your people usually claim to be for the family so why do all of you support the man and political party which destroy it.? stupid pequito burrito.

  • T Day | September 2, 2012 8:14 PMReply

    "What Clint did was BRILLIANT! " You guys have the bar set so low for "intellectual" that you imagine a goofy character like Wilbur Romney and Paul Ryan are the sharpest tacks on the board. Clint embarrassed himself and I fully expect him to apologize before November 2. He's smarter than that display of arrogance and ignorance and may have been off of his meds.

  • ShotgunRex | September 2, 2012 2:06 PMReply

    Jay Fernendez is most likely an illegal immigrant, maybe that explains the reason he jacks off to defending Obama.

  • Dave | September 2, 2012 12:45 PMReply

    What an awful slanted view. An excellent display of dumbassery, however, by Jay Fernandez.

    Save his career? It's already been successful by any means.

    What Clint did was BRILLIANT! It was perhaps the best of his acting career. All the way down to the suit he chose. (He's usually impeccibly dressed when in a suit.)

    The fact that his politics differ and Jay is questioning it, is everything wrong with Hollywood. It's the only place where one's politics matter, according to their work.... INCLUDING POLITICS!

    Lawyers and politicians don't agree as a living, yet they still keep their jobs. Politics are different in every nook and crannie of America, yet Jay thinks it should matter. He's spreading the political hate in Hollywood.

    Perhaps it's the reason that Libertarians like Clint, or Friends of Lincoln, don't say much until their older and still are outcast as cooks.

    But for Jay Fernandez to suggest that Clint's career is over is unthinkable. Americans will come out in droves to support him now. They'll probably head to Chick-Fil-A afteward.

    ...but because Clint's politics don't agree with Jay's, he questions the move.

    How will Jay Fernandez keep his job? How will he ever recover from his once lousy career?

  • Josh | September 2, 2012 9:41 AMReply

    Yes, welcome to Hollywood, where being Republican may be more harmful to your career than raping a child. Had Clint only raped a child, perhaps he could still be given a standing ovation at the Oscars, right Roman Polanski? As it stands, for being a Republican, he might not be able to save his career.

    You stay classy, Hollywood, you bastions of diversity (so long as everyone believes the same thing). You stay imaginative Hollywood (indeed, just how could someone within Hollywood have a minority view on politics, why I can't imagine?). You stay funny, Hollywood (doesn't everyone know we stopped making Presidents the butt of jokes the moment Bush left office?).

    Between these two conventions, where every single thing will be scripted, here is a guy that went out without a teleprompter. Did it work? Maybe. Maybe not. But he took a risk. He did something no late night comic has had the guts to do in 4 years - poke the President in the ribs. This is something comics used to be labeled courageous for doing. It was light-heared, it was funny, it was a bit. He performed. And he killed in front of his audience. He interacted with them. Yes, he rambled a time or two. But is there any consideration that this might have revealed people take politics a bit too seriously? Might his bit have revealed we take the President a bit too seriously - so seriously we can't poke fun at him as we have every President for at least 40 years (probably far more if you include newspaper comics)? Can't we be pleased to see someone at 82 who is still living life and working? Of course he's not in his prime - he's 82 - but he's still living life.

    No, no.....in Hollywood, let's wonder how being such an out of the closet Republican might ruin his career and legacy. Well, you stay open-minded Hollywood.

  • Andy Halmay | September 2, 2012 6:00 AMReply

    Jay Fernandez, you may be a U.S. citizen but you are not an American. We have a thing we call Freedom of Speech which allows us to be disrespectful to those who have lost our respect, particularly if it is our president. Professional comedians will tell you that if you get a laugh from a third of your audience, you're in, you're successful because two thirds never get it. Some of them will laugh later not to look stupid. This American got it and laughed harder and longer than at any time in recollection. Not only was he funny, but in that bumbling, Jimmy Stewart manner he achieved more than all the orators and ranters on behalf of Romney. Clint's little effort will go down in showbiz history as classic comedy. It has already picked up as big if not a bigger audience than the TV networks had on the event and it will triple than in a week. The simplicity of his serious message got through most effectively; that we have a failed president who needs to be replaced. and it will corral more votes than all the boring speeches by the rest. As far as Hollywood is concerned - it needs Clint and Clint doesn't need Hollywood which, when it comes to politics, represents the biggest collection of naive, nay, infantile hemorrhaging-heart liberals in the world. With all undue respect, Jay, you are an un-American idiot.

  • bondgirl | September 2, 2012 8:57 PM

    If you're not Native American, I don't think you're in a postition to tell ANYONE who isn't American.

  • jack | September 2, 2012 3:52 AMReply

    This is pure conjecture-based propaganda by coprporate-controlled indiewire disguised as authoritative truth. This is what passes for media comment in today's sad world. Indiewire is a media outlet barely able to comment accurately on it's chosen subject matter let alone the political pig pen and it's slave-waged scribes are clearly of a false left/right cool-aid drinker persuasion. Despite what the article professes as insight and what the haters here offer as comment, (even if they are actually real posters and not indiewire employees) the mere visual cue of Clint's presence may have helped the GOP enormously but it sure brought attention to the issues raised in the video, that is if you even watched and understood it. Sure made my day. Meanwhile as I stand here being groped by a MALE lip-smacking TSA agent (with a criminal record). Gee, thanks Obama.

    It doesn't matter who you vote for, the government always win. Funny that.

  • dan | September 2, 2012 1:25 AMReply

    Let me tell you something boy, there are alot more voting old white men than voting old brown or black men.

  • bondgirl | September 2, 2012 8:59 PM

    Umm, only if you count Hispanics as "white"....then no. Better look at the voting record for 2008.

  • Theobknox | September 1, 2012 7:43 PMReply

    Reading some of the comments on here is almost exactly like listening to Mr. Eastwood's incoherent rant. Makes you want to pat a few people on the head to reassure them. American politics is simply a badly run reality tv show, at a comparable quality to Springer. The republicans love it that way (Springer viewers are their base), and the democrats walk around wincing, trying to figure out how to parent.

  • Jeff | September 1, 2012 7:25 PMReply

    "Eastwood took very public sides in an ugly fight." Ok, so do we need to go down the extremely long list of liberal actors/directors who have done this? Michael Moore ring a bell? I'm not comparing Farenheit 911 to Clint's stage act, but your comment isn't either. You're just saying it's wrong for him to have done that. Pot, meet kettle.

  • Eric McClane | September 1, 2012 6:14 PMReply

    I'm always amazed how you liberals are so enraged or offended if someone on the right has a sense of humor. If Clint was some foul mouthed, inarticulate, lib puke comedian who was attacking Romney, then you would all be applauding him. You would consider him fresh, edgy or irreverently funny. However, seeing that Clint was scorching your socialist, apathetic, failure, lefty messiah you all whine in fake outrage about how unbecoming or racist it was. Please let me inform you, there is nothing racist about Clint Eastwood; he is a great man who was excercising his right to free speach. You libs need to realize, Americans have been making fun of presidents since this country was first founded, this one just happens to be black. For people who are supposed to be so tolerant, you all seem to be offended so easily. Wake up and smell the coffee... humor is gift from God, so we can deal civilly with our differences.

  • filmexec | September 1, 2012 6:12 PMReply

    What's left of his Career? Are you F@##$%g Nuts? This man has a Legacy of brilliant work! In his 50 year career he has done more quality work that all the wiening Liberals reading this post have or will ever do! Discgree with him if you will, but recognize his talent and many accomplishments he has, including working with Sean Penn a troubled Leftist and one hell of a brilliant actor! Remember "Mystic River" you partician fool! Roger Ebert I hope you read this and Shame on you for your partician retoric because you made you living off Eastwoods Films and should appoligise for your stupid remarks. Perhaps your illness has made you bitter and pathic?

  • CH | September 1, 2012 4:18 PMReply

    Wow. This article is so sad but is the perfect example of what intolerance really looks like. The problem with you, Mr. writer guy, is that YOU and most of your type in news rooms and publications and all of the “liberal sheep” in Hollywood are the ones that truly are the biggest racists of all. But I will give you a pat on the back because you actually had the nerve to put it in print. Ha!

    We get it. It is shocking to you that Mr. Eastwood actually went to the RNC and pointed out HIS OWN beliefs of how Obama has failed. He broke the rules because apparently, rule #1 is that only democrats in entertainment can publically admonish a sitting president. That is what makes you such a hypocrite, Mr. Fernandez. The fact that you want to pretend that some of the actors and such in your industry have never been “childishly, disrespectful and blindingly crass in his criticisms of a sitting president on such a public stage.” It shows your ignorance because we aren't that dumb. Even worse, it shows your acceptance of their disrespectful behavior. And to even infer that it is racist is idiotic and irresponsible. Pot. Meet. Kettle. Deal with it. The rest of us Americans have had to endure it from you and Hollywood for way too long.

  • Mark Hooks | September 1, 2012 3:57 PMReply

    'But my real question is a bigger, more personal one: How does an artist who has shown such intelligence and humanism in the last two decades as a filmmaker step out and be so childishly disrespectful and blindingly crass in his criticisms of a sitting president on such a public stage? This is what perplexes, saddens and angers me about the post-Clinton political right: We can — and will, and should — debate policy all day long, but no one is compelled to do it disrespectfully, dishonestly, disgustingly. That’s a personal choice.'


    This paragraph, & the following one in which the race card is played, yet again, is why it's become obvious that a minority president is a bad idea. (At least a liberal one, as I doubt that if Obama were Republican, the attacks would be considered as 'disrespectful, dishonest, disgusting', at least by the media.) If this is to be the result, that an American can find the 'personal choice' of another American to ridicule his sitting president to be 'disgusting' and 'racist', then unfortunately we better stick with the white guys. The Left is too immature, too focused on race as the driver of their thought processes, to allow the debate to be about anything other than skin-color. Think of what we're witnessing: the media, who wouldn't exist, at least in their current form, without the freedom to express whatever words they choose, calling for the restriction of that expression, based on their definition of 'disrespect.' You should be praising Eastwood's opportunity to criticize.

    Skin-color as a defense against bad policy only reflects the horrible inadequacy of that policy.
    Until the Left can move beyond race, and stop wielding it as a political weapon, I'm afraid America isn't ready for minority leadership.

  • Ralph Malph | September 1, 2012 3:56 PMReply

    Jay, I worked on Happy Days. You never worked in Hollywood. Your just a fanboy living in Mommy's basement. However, Jay, your douchebaggery is beyond reproach.

  • Daniel | September 1, 2012 2:46 PMReply

    Such a simple speech, with a simple metaphor of an empty chair in the white house. Most people loved it, which it what drives Hollywood crazy! Maybe our beloved Barrack Hussein Obama should hold a couple more $50,000 a plate fundraisers so that our respected intellectual Hollywood celebrities can show up and pretend that four more years of government spending, hiking taxes, and bowing before leaders of other countries is what this country needs.

  • Bob Wright | September 1, 2012 1:25 PMReply

    Jay: Have you ever made a movie? Do you actually work in Hollywood, or are you one of the legion of critics and pundits that live off the industry, but don't actually "do" anything in the entertainment business?

    I've made movies. I've worked in television.

    You don't speak for Hollywood, and your opening line "As far as Hollywood is concerned..." is absurd and presumptuous.

    I am part of Hollywood. You work at a fan-boy web-site. Don't dare speak for all of us, or tell us what we think.

  • Cheri | September 1, 2012 9:04 PM

    Bravo!

  • thekid | September 1, 2012 12:52 PMReply

    A party of "old white men"?! Leave your racist hate at home. Republicans fought slavery, the KKK, and segregation and obtained for women the right to vote. Republicans outlawed slavery, desegregated the civil force and military, passed the 1964 and 1965 Civil Rights Acts, got women the right to vote, and, today, fight for the least among us, the unborn and the future taxpayers of America.

    Try a little decency for once.

  • get real | September 2, 2012 9:01 PM

    Republicans fought slavery, and today eletrocute more black men than white men for the same crime. Real progress.

  • Who dat ninja | September 1, 2012 12:45 PMReply

    So here comes this legend onto a national stage, cuts through all the crap and tells us how he feels in a direct but amusing way and because it doesn't connect in substance to the writer of this article and so many bloggers...he's beaten up for it. There's a lot of truth in that talk he gave us a couple of nights ago. He praised Obama for the positive can do mood of the country when elected but was quick to point out that when politicians, who he reminded us were indeed our employees, do not do the job they promised then they have to be let go. He was critical of politicians in general and put the responsibility on us as a nation to be great and hire the right people for the job. He did not suggest a one savior who will put things right, but called for us to take responsibility and do what we have to do to save our country. The greatness was not heaped on Romney, but he suggested that we "hire" him to do the job for this country we need done. As for those who didn't like the idea of some of the juvenile "comments" coming from the "Obama chair" try to remember that this was the president who made light of the special Olympics as fodder for a joke about being incompetent physically at something. And for those of you who don't think Eastwood's comments got under the skin of the current administration a bit, then I guess you haven't seen the photograph rebuttal his camp put out into cyberspace. Eastwood has always been funny and direct and often seems to not give a damn what the establishment around him thinks and that speech proved it. I have always respected the man and with his eccentric but effective time at the podium I love him all the more. I don't really care what you think of me for saying that, but at least cut Clint a little slack before you bury the man and his future in Hollywood. I think Obama is a good man who means and meant well, but it may be time to let him go. That's a politeness in phrase you won't find from many hardcore liberals dolling out their criticism of the opposition.

  • Andymovieman | September 1, 2012 12:42 PMReply

    hollywood spends more time kissing ass with obama than they do making a good movie. which is why conservative fans boycott their liberal shit movies. i agree with the conservatives. hollywood has gotten crazy over gays, african american racism , antisemitism, propaganda and politics, etc. i will never watch a new movie from liberal nutcases in hollywood again.

  • Andymovieman | September 1, 2012 12:36 PMReply

    clint did a great speech at the rnc and on the chrysler ad. screw all the liberals who hate it ,gay and african american, etc. hollywood now is so corrupt. i will not watch anything new from all these liberal commies like sean penn, chris rock, zachary quinto, tom hanks, tim robbins and even george clooney. clint is a libertarian and he can say whatever he wants, it is still freedom of speech.

  • Pat | September 1, 2012 12:04 PMReply

    Mr. Zabriskie, you have expressed how I felt. Thank you for your reasonable response. This article shook me up and made me lose a lot of faith, especially because it is in article of Indiewire which I have always considered the upmost of independent thinking and views expressed in film. We should be able to express difference of opinions and acceptance without any fear, hate or ridicule. That is the definition of independence.

  • What Pat Said | September 1, 2012 12:02 PMReply

    So its okay that a majority of actors and filmmakers are liberal and show support for their respected causes but if someone doesnt agree with them, then they should be outcast? I do not think that is a fair view. He is one of the most respected artists in the business and doing this does not tarnish that. He simply has an opinion like everyone else.
    Besides- its Clint Eastwood he never made any money CARING about what people think about him...

  • Jay Zabriskie | September 1, 2012 11:50 AMReply

    I don't think his Hollywood relationships will take a serious hit but it does add an asterisk by his name that didn't need to be put there as you said. I am a long time fan and I've always had problems reconciling the themes in his work as a director with his politics. By stepping on stage for one of the worst candidates since Nixon he really reveals where he stands. Or does he? Perhaps he's showing independence from a Hollywood that is perceived to be "lefty" so he wants to balance something out. But Jesus Mitt Romney?

    Yeah, I'll still go see his "Curve" movie. I can't help myself. I like his films I just really disagree with his political choices. If I meet him I'll tell him so.

  • Pat | September 1, 2012 11:36 AMReply

    You know what is sad? The double inflexible standard. We have too many liberal or democrat actors giving political support and Hollywood says that's okay, but if anyone gives support to the Republicans, then they have crossed the line. The amount of bias and hate shown to Clint Eastwood is sickening. He has my respect and support because this STILL is a country where you have a right to express your opinion. And we should always remember that. As it stands, I am now looking closer to the republican candidates because I don't want to be a part of a party that is killing liberty and freedom -as is shown in this article. Thank you for opening my eyes.

  • Photoguy | September 1, 2012 10:05 AMReply

    "...unpatriotic condescension"? Entertainers being publicly disrespectful to a sitting president? Where were you when Reagan was president? How about between 2000-2008, when George "Chimpy McBushHitler" was in office? At least Eastwood didn't make a TV movie about the assassination of Barack Obama. Do progressives have any self-awareness whatsoever? Any?

  • Hols | September 1, 2012 9:32 AMReply

    23,000,000 people are out of work, and since Obama has become President, we are $5,000,000,000,000.00 deeper in debt. It is time to let Obama be voted out. Clint Eastwood is entirely correct.

  • Timmeh | September 1, 2012 9:23 AMReply

    You libs are showing yourselves to be a bunch of childish dumb fucks. YOU see everyone as black, white, asian, etc. YOU are OBSESSED with color of people's skin, not their character. The ONLY thing we ever hear out of your filthy sores is someone's color, gender, class, etc. YOU have divided this country more than anyone before. That's how YOU hold your power. Liberalism is dying and you're loony cries of race it someone so much as looks at Obama are actually becoming funny. You are pathetic child-like people who never grew up and now you're crying because someone's about to take your ball away. Get used to it, losers. Especially you Jay boy.

  • Jeff D | September 1, 2012 9:16 AMReply

    So, the Dems and their misguided leader receive a well-deserved beating from a respected Hollywood icon, and Fernandez gathers his toys and runs home crying. In his effort to rally support, Jay has embarrassed himself by exercising the literary restraint of a jilted teenage girl. If he is perplexed, saddened and angered by anything, perhaps he should take notice of the double-standard he blindly ignores in his own political party.

  • Ron Merk | September 1, 2012 5:43 AMReply

    You said it, "Money and talent trump most anything." It's Hollywood, for Chrissakes, and a business of people whose only interest is money and power. If you think WB is going to walk away from a cash cow (cow being the operative word this week for Mr. Eastwood), you're out of your mind. I hate to sound so crass about the business that has supported me comfortably for 45 years, but as an old distributor once said to me, in his very funny Yiddish New York accent, "It's a business of who-ers." I think that he meant people who will do anything for money, and not care who they do it for or to. Look at Mel Gibson. He's still doing business with studios and talent after his anti-Semitic outbursts. People quickly forget about the past sins of anyone who can make them a buck. It's just the way it is.

  • Mr. Derp | September 1, 2012 4:04 AMReply

    So criticizing an acknowledged failure of a president is now racist? So only progressives and liberals can have freedom of speech? Hollywood and the corrupt media such as Jay Fernandez have now become the fascists they claim to despise.

  • James G | September 1, 2012 4:15 AM

    Yes, the Hollywood leftists-- the same crowd that gives Roman Polanski a standing ovation-- would gladly destroy the career and legacy of anyone who criticizes the POTUS they worship.

    Racist has a whole new meaning since Obama was elected, and that alone is reason enough to vote the man out of office. After all, he knows what is going on with the charges of "racist" and he stands by silently.

  • Ron Merk | September 1, 2012 4:01 AMReply

    You said it, "Money and talent trump most anything." It's Hollywood, for Chrissakes, and a business of people who's only interest is money and power. If you think WB is going to walk away from a cash cow (cow being the operative word this week), you're out of your mind. I hate so sound so crass about the business that has supported my comfortably for 45 years, but as an old distributor once said to me, in his very funny Yiddish New York accent, "It's a business of who-ers." I think that meant that the operative word is "people who will do anything for money, and not care who they do it for or to. Look at Mel Gibson. He's still doing business with studios and talent after his anti-Semitic outbursts. People quickly forget about the past sins of anyone who can make them a buck. It's just the way it is.

  • Helluva | September 1, 2012 3:40 AMReply

    Great piece! Sums up much of what I thought after seeing Clint's odd ramble-on. It's seemed unnecessary and sad. A lot of these comments seem to bash the author for politicizing Clint's legacy, as if one can honestly separate the artist from his worldview. It's mildly shocking to see such an icon (although aware of his conservative views) reveal himself to be so extreme in his embrace of TEA PARTY rhetoric. Fanboys (and girls) will blow it off as senility or "not that big a deal" but dude showed his true colors last night. Wow.

  • Thomas Bosack | September 1, 2012 3:32 AMReply

    Some one tell that Old Man to stay home.

  • BO the BFer | September 1, 2012 3:19 AMReply

    Racism. It's bandied about by liberals with such ease and frequency that it no longer has meaning.
    "... a party of old white men ..." That's racist and ageist. Don't forget that the KKK only accepts Democrats.

  • GMW | September 1, 2012 2:39 AMReply

    Clint's speech was underwhelming as a comedy routine, but the man is entitled to his opinion even if expressed in an odd manner. This should not affect his ability as an artist to create films. In Hollywood, the dollar (rightly in a capitalist system) trumps ideology. It would be unconscionable to persecute Clint for expressing his opinion and more importantly, bad business

  • tsol | September 1, 2012 1:03 AMReply

    Thoughtcrime! Doubleplussungood. Big Brother is most displeased.

  • RJ McHatton | September 1, 2012 12:22 AMReply

    I thought that this was a free country where people can agree to disagree. Hollywood used to have blacklisting problems but the way you talk there is still blacklisting. Clint Eastwood should be able to back any political party or candidate he wants. We all should be able to support anyone we want without retribution or threats of retaliation like you are suggesting.

  • Luis | August 31, 2012 9:58 PMReply

    Come off it, Fernandez. If Tina Fey puts up an empty chair for Romney in a few days, you will happily snicker at all the lines. Your observations are media-biased, that's all. Dem's can dish it out (with blatant vulgarity), but they sure can't take a mild helping. We've had to put up with Garry Trudeau's leftist cartoon for 8 years of Bush's administration, blanked out president's head and all, so suck it up for a few minutes!

  • SoulHonky | August 31, 2012 8:03 PMReply

    "Trouble with the Curve" is going to tank because it doesn't look that good, not because of the RNC. Clint's speech will effect his career as much as his wife's reality show - not at all. Someone is buying the anti-Conservative hype too much to think that Beyonce would drop out of a huge movie because of one speech. (And for the record, I'm not saying that there isn't some anti-Conservative bias but some people like Clint, Bruce Willis, and others are bullet proof.)
    In the end, it seems like the writer just wanted to post something to bash the Republican party so he concocted a knee jerk, poorly thought out idea about this affecting Clint's career.
    This is the kind of article that, as someone who leans mostly to the left, frustrates me because it just gives more fodder to the Right. Instead of telling Clint to do more takes, this writer should have taken a deep breath and done a page one rewrite of this piece (or, better yet, a Command + A then delete.)

  • Noobama2012 | August 31, 2012 7:42 PMReply

    Could the author of this rather stupid article please post links to the articles he wrote about the beyond disrespect that was consistently shown to Bush, primarily by the Hollyweird crowd while he was president. You just seem so very very concerned that we all show respect to a sitting president...just SOOOO concerned. You do know azzhat that we are allowed and actually should criticize public servants which is what obama and ALL elected officials are. The country is an utter disaster under his "leadership" and YOU seem to say we should sit silently in our homes and scream into our pillows about it but never utter a word outloud. Get real. Obama is an assclown and Clint was TOO respectful to him. Hows that for respect for ya!

  • Indievoter | August 31, 2012 7:09 PMReply

    Cha-Ching, RNC! Clint's performance was orchestrated perfectly! Crazy like a fox! He said what so many Americans know about the current president. The presidency is no place for an amateur, even if he is a nice man with a cute smile. Eastwood knowingly took one for Team USA as he pointed out the utter failure of "hope and change" and the desperate necessity we have to change course. He allowed Romney to stay clean (an Obama strategy) as he (Eastwood) brought home the hard hitting points that needed to be said on the national stage.
    Today, all of the talking points on the airwaves are about Eastwood's telling of Obama's failures. Eastwood made it OK to acknowledge it. We all want to wash ourselves of our legacy of slavery, but we cannot do this any longer at the expense of our jobs, economy and global strength. Eastwood once again proves his expertise in acting and direction! Bravo Clint, you made my day!

  • Helluva | September 1, 2012 11:06 AM

    Here's one: Obama is wayyy too congenial and willing to compromise with those who have NO INTEREST in seeing him succeed. He allows too much unnecessary and foolish chatter from wing-nuts who shout things like "You lie!" in a State of the Union address when, as Commander-In-Chief, he should've had the bum dismissed from the proceedings as a consequence of disrespecting his elected office. He is way too concillatory with his "enemies" while he often talks down to, or scolds those that support him. He's learning though. And I suspect that during his second term he'll evolve into a stronger, less pragmatic leader. How's that?

  • Photoguy | September 1, 2012 10:12 AM

    Helluva -
    Please include a list of criticisms anyone can make of the current president that you won't claim is based on racism.

  • Helluva | September 1, 2012 3:14 AM

    So, the office of the President was suitable for "an amateur" for eight years prior to the current Prez's arrival? Bullshit! Vote/support who you want but get real. Eastwood's speech WAS racist & condescending to a sitting PRESIDENT (whether you like it or not) and was an unprecendented act at a political convention by a major Hollywood legend. Truth is truth yo'...this half-BLACK President's presence has brought out the WORST in many white Americans, who feel that the country belongs to "them" (whatever that means) and has to be taken back before it's too late!!! Apparently, this legendary director is one of them when he's not behind the camera. Sad AND strange...

  • Tina Rocha | August 31, 2012 6:54 PMReply

    LMAO...figures. Two Hollywood Titans, Gerald Mullen and Clint Eastwood are turning Hollywood into effeminate mush. And what do we have in common with these two gentlemen? We have no need for Hollywood either. Obama, you have 3 months. EOM

  • Ron | August 31, 2012 6:53 PMReply

    I think Clint was actually trying to help Obama. He was just trying to "out" Fox News and the republicans for criticizing the fictional Obama that they have created for easy pot shots.

  • Henry | August 31, 2012 7:45 PM

    Your comment is just nonsensical weirdness..I will write it off to you were unable to locate your meds this morning and leave it at that

  • Barry | August 31, 2012 6:27 PMReply

    Listen, there are a lot of us that are not entirely happy with Mr. Obama. Even after going all the way with him in 2008. Things are too secret and vindictive and forgiving to the criminals who got rich while our economy tanked. I want Bradley Manning praised; he wants him imprisoned with no charges and no key. At least Clint Eastwood asked us to bring home the troops -- tomorrow. I don't like Mitt Romney, but I did like the notion that we should declare the war in Afghanistan over. Will we hear anything remotely like that from the Democrats?

  • Vexious | August 31, 2012 6:04 PMReply

    More bile spewing from the know nothing leftwing

  • TierraDelFuego | August 31, 2012 6:04 PMReply

    Listen dahlings, Wasn't Clint Eastwood just sensational at the RNC. He was so poised and presidential looking, every gesture and nuance of character so on target. It has impressed big money from the Koch Brothers to back his new movie that Hollywood is buzzing about, a full biopic of the last three years of the Reagan years in the White House. Clint will star as President Reagan and Sarah Palin has agreed to play Nancy Reagan. It's perfect bobbikins, Clint can just repeat his dialogue to an empty chair addressing the invisible entity as Margaret Thatcher while the lovely Sarah Palin zips around dazzling everyone with 102 changes of wardrobe. it's a cinch dahlings, a big money maker and a new crown ( but is it big enough) for Clint 'Mr. President' Eastwood.

  • testiculus-gigantus | August 31, 2012 5:59 PMReply

    Try this take on Clint from another Fernandez, one of infinitely more intelligence and insight as well as a sense of humor...http://pjmedia.com/richardfernandez/2012/08/30/the-eastwood-speech/

  • testiculus-gigantus | August 31, 2012 6:00 PM

    Whoops http://pjmedia.com/richardfernandez/2012/08/30/the-eastwood-speech/

  • Cecily | August 31, 2012 5:58 PMReply

    I clicked into this article from Facebook and was surprised to see all the entertainment-related advertisements and article suggestions on a political blog...but wait! This ISN'T a political blog! It's a website about MOVIES. A website that has probably never encouraged people to blackball any super left-wing actors/directors/producers who have made fools of themselves in public when talking about politics. Took me a minute to figure out what was going on.

  • Bette | August 31, 2012 5:58 PMReply

    For some reason that I still can't fathom, Democrats voted for a a community organizer with no financial experience, no economic experience, no business experience and no executive experience - claiming he was perfect for the job - the best ever. All Clint pointed out was the fact that lawyers without any business experience don't make the best leaders. Duh.

    To return the favor I'd like to choose the health care providers for my Democrat friends - the qualifications would be people with no medical experience, no surgical experience, no patient care experience of any kind. Let's see what kind of mood that puts them in...

  • Ronnie D. | August 31, 2012 5:56 PMReply

    As a democrat myself, this is a terrible article, both in it's prose and execution.

  • Joe in OK | August 31, 2012 5:39 PMReply

    Barack Hussein Obama is the least qualified person ever elected POTUS and the past 3 plus years have demonstrated his woeful ineptness. Anyone who doesn't see that is a bigger imbecile. Those who know it, but support him are unpatriotic and proMarxist wonks bent on fundamentally transforming this country into something most Americans don't want. Clint Eastwood masterfully minimized Obama's stature and highlighted the shortcomings of this one-term mistake.

  • Ted | August 31, 2012 5:36 PMReply

    We just had a President (George Bush) and currently have a Vice-President (Joe Biden) who regularly acted/act like buffoons. If the press can currently give Biden a pass on all his retarded crap, I think we can currently give Eastwood a pass - especially since, unlike Biden, Eastwood's buffoonery doesn't affect anyone. Despite the goofiness of it all, I found it refreshing actually. The job of a politician is to pander, lie, distort, and manipulate the uninformed voting public. At least with Eastwood, I felt there was some honesty there - no one could accuse that disaster of being an effective propaganda device with the intent of manipulation. When Mitt Romney & Barack Obama talk, I feel like I'm being spoken to by a monstrous combination of a fly-by-night fraudster and a Kindergarden teacher. Anyway, I predict this blunder will have trivial effects on his career and at the box office. Your average film goer doesn't really care about this stuff, and studio execs and actors will continue to work with Eastwood because he's established a reputation of making respectable, above-average films that still managed to pull in money.

  • Steve | August 31, 2012 5:29 PMReply

    I thought it was great, you have to pick on any celebrity that isn't a bleeding heart liberal? Not all of us in Hollywood care for the liberal left ya know.

  • chtx | September 1, 2012 4:23 PM

    shhhh. don't tell anyone because Fernandez and his kind will never look at you the same.

  • Mookie | August 31, 2012 5:22 PMReply

    It's always embarrassing when an old legend starts to lose it mentally and does something really tasteless and silly in public. Clint showed he's no exception. Sad that his mind isn't clear and his politics are so out of touch. He should probably just stay quiet and behind the camera until he drops dead. As far as Hollywood is concerned he will makes films as long as he wants to, provided they make money. Because that's all anyone cares about at the studios. He'll be able to fail a few more times because of his legendary status and the love from WB but have no doubt as soon as he stops making money for them he will be gone. I will always love his work as an actor and much of his directorial work too...I wish he would shut up and just keep shooting! He lost a TON of respect last night.

  • Mike | August 31, 2012 5:19 PMReply

    Interesting that Mr. Fernandez would fall at Clint's feet if he would just give him the time of day. Clint doesn't need your approval or give a damn about your pouting rant. Seems that you have no qualms whatsoever about the great majority of imbecilic lefties from Hollywood bash a Republican, but God forbid if he criticizes your annointed one. Get your whiney childish temper tantrum in check and go sit your ass in the corner. That's what we say to immature children who can't communicate with the adults.

  • Bobby | August 31, 2012 4:58 PMReply

    You're out of your mind.

  • Dana Gonzales | August 31, 2012 4:57 PMReply

    After reading this opinionated trash I can not wait to unsubscribe
    when I am done replying . What a awful agenda.. Please keep the politics to yourselves.

  • BillMunny | August 31, 2012 4:53 PMReply

    Wow. I'm voting for Obama and am a liberal Democrat. I think it is terrible that you would go after Clint like this in such a way as to attack his career. It reflects poorly on Hollywood society if you are considered the norm, and I do not think you are. Sure Clint embarrassed himself, and it was an uncomfortable moment. But in no way does it take away from one of the greatest and most productive careers in Hollywood. Shame on you sir. Have you no decency? I hope you are just young an immature.