By Ray Pride

Tony Kushner

“Well, like absolutely everything that this guy has done since getting into office, I think it’s an appalling idea. I hope it’s noise. I really hope that the Republican Congress doesn’t go along with it. We spend $400 million on military marching bands, and $145 million on the NEA, in a country of 319 million. They’re woefully underfunded. It’s a completely empty gesture: we’re talking about a $1.1 trillion budget, and a savings of a few hundred million dollars – a negligible amount. They think the NEA is going to be an easy win for them – an easy thing where they can say to their base, “Look, we got rid of these wasteful programs”. But the programs are of value, even if they’re woefully underfunded. They’re digitizing information that’s of immense value to scholars. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting produces invaluable news programs, which I suppose are among the enemies of the people. It’s never about the NEA. The barbarians who go after it are usually after something bigger than that. In the 90s, when Republicans went after it, it was to stop the LGBT movement and feminism and multiculturalism. The NEA was a handy way of going after that. Now, I think, this is only comprehensible as an expression of the president’s priorities: Congress has to pass the budget but what he’s saying is, ‘Let’s start dismantling the federal government.’ The vision that is more and more clearly looming is that we’re not looking at an attempt to set up a fascist state. We’re looking at a decisive victory in a battle that’s been going on since before the Civil War – really since the founding of this country – for the states’ rightists.”
~ Tony Kushner

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“I think [technology has[ its made my life faster, it’s made the ability to succeed easier. But has that made my life better? Is it better now than it was in the eighties or seventies? I don’t think we are happier. Maybe because I’m 55, I really am asking these questions… I really want to do meaningful things! This is also the time that I really want to focus on directing. I think that I will act less and less. I’ve been doing it for 52 years. It’s a long time to do one thing and I feel like there are a lot of stories that I got out of my system that I don’t need to tell anymore. I don’t need to ever do The Accused again! That is never going to happen again! You hit these milestones as an actor, and then you say, ‘Now what? Now what do I have to say?'”
~ Jodie Foster

“If there’s one rule Hollywood has metaphysically proven in its century of experimentation, it’s that there’s no amount of money you can’t squander in the quest for hits.

“Netflix has spent the past couple years attempting to brute-force jailbreak this law. Its counter-theory has seemed to be, sure, a billion dollars doesn’t guarantee quality but how about three billion dollars? How about five billion dollars? Seven?

“This week’s latest cinematic opus to run across no-man’s-land into the machine-gun emplacements has been the Jared Leto yakuza movie ‘The Outsider.’ Once again, debuting on Netflix, another thing called a movie that at one glance doesn’t look like any kind of movie anyone has ever seen before, outside of off-prime time screenings at the AFM.

“If you’re working at a normal studio, you have one or two of these total misfires in a year and people start calling for your head. How many is Netflix going on? Fifteen? Twenty? This quarter? Any normal company would be getting murdered over results like that.”
~ Richard Rushfield