When Vanessa Redgrave unleashed her tirade against “Zionist hoodlums” at the 1978 Academy Awards, she became one of the most notorious examples of how things can go horribly wrong when celebrities talk politics on Hollywood’s big night.
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The “hoodlums” were Jewish groups who protested the acclaimed British actress for helping to make a pro-Palestinian documentary. Her belligerent, self-righteous rant didn’t go over well. After Redgrave left the stage, author and “Network” screenwriter Paddy Chayefsky came out and blasted Redgrave and other celebrities who think it’s OK to get political at the Academy Awards.
He said, “I’m sick and tired of people exploiting the Academy Awards for the propagation of their own personal propaganda.”
The crowd broke into thundering applause. But don’t expect that kind of affirmation this year for anyone who says stars shouldn’t make political speeches. That’s because some speeches are likely to get political tonight – very political.
And the tweets and headlines going viral will be less about red-carpet fashion disasters or surprising wins or snubs, but about which left-leaning celebrity delivered the most lacerating takedown of President Donald Trump and his controversial policies.
This awards season has already been marked by viral political speech moments. At the Golden Globes, Meryl Streep drew enthusiastic applause and a presidential hate-tweet when she spoke out against Trump’s derogatory rhetoric against immigrants, people of color and people with disabilities.
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And at the Screen Actors Guild awards, Oakland native and supporting actor nominee Mahershala Ali moved hearts with his subtle but powerful speech about diversity and inclusion. He tied his character in “Moonlight,” a man who takes in a neglected child bullied for his potential homosexuality, with his own experience of being different — notably his decision 17 years ago to convert to Islam.
Mahershala Ali, seen accepting his Screen Actors Guild Award for his role in “Moonlight. accepts the award for outstanding performance by a male actor in a supporting role for “Moonlight” at the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium & Expo Hall on Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
The speeches by Streep and Ali, as well as Redgrave’s historic misfire, show why politically-minded celebrities need to take care in how they deliver their messages tonight. That is, if their goal isn’t just …read more
Source:: East Bay – Entertainment