Sony Pictures, the Hollywood studio responsible for producing the kind of movies that almost always shatter the box office is embroiled in a nightmarish hacking of grandiose proportions.
Leaked information has led to private data being exposed, including emails between studio execs that contain details that aren’t supposed to be made public.
Things wouldn’t be so bad if the stuff shuttling back and forth didn’t contain incriminating evidence.
But alas! It does. An email exchange between studio co-chairman Amy Pascal and producer Scott Rudin has re-surfaced. And not only is it blatantly offensive, but it is bloated with derogatory themes aimed at President Obama.
Buzzfeed was the first to break the story, and from the specifics of the conversation between the two executives, it was determined that they were discussing a Obama fundraiser, with Pascal trying to get advice from Rudin about what topic she should pose to the President.
The following is an excerpt from the conversation – courtesy of Variety.
“Would he like to finance some movies”. Responded Rudin
“I doubt it. Should I ask him if he liked Django?” said Pascal, with Rudin replying “12 Years”.
“Or the butler. Or think like a man?” continued Pascal, who is a major donor for the Democratic party and President Obama.
“Ride-along. I bet he likes Kevin Hart”, said Rudin.
This is a clear indication of why African-American actors have a challenging time swaying movie executives who have already mastered the art of compartmentalizing when it comes to the casting of minorities. It is also validates Chris Rock’s sentiment about the devaluing of Black talent.
Amy Pascal also engaged in another email exchange with studio exec Clint Culpepper, and Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton calling Kevin Hart, who a major cash cow for Sony Pictures a ‘greedy whore’ for requesting more money for movie social media engagement.
“I’m not saying he’s a whore, but he’s a whore.”
— Amy Pascal, Clint Culpepper and Michael Lynton on Actor Kevin Hart
More money, in addition to the three million he was already being paid. To tweet. And maybe do some Instagram stuff. And my god, Culpepper adds, think of the precedent!
It’s not as if we paid him 3M and 4M respectively for his last 2 films thinking he might be nominated. We paid for his ability to open a film which included his social media savvy. I feel like this is something that should be negotiated going into the film as opposed to after the fact. It feels tantamount to buying a car and then upon picking it up being told that the engine will cost extra. I’m tempted to suggest we call his bluff. If he doesn’t do his normal routine, his film will not open as well and his brand will appear diminished and he will- in fact – be fucking himself because we have his next 2 immediate films. And then there’s the social media precedent we’re setting…especially in light of the fact that Channing is at the same agency.
Sent from my iPhone
Apologies have been issued from both Rudin and Pascal but the damage has already been done.
Scott Rudin via Deadline
“Private emails between friends and colleagues written in haste and without much thought or sensitivity, even when the content of them is meant to be in jest, can result in offense where none was intended,” he told Deadline. “I made a series of remarks that were meant only to be funny, but in the cold light of day, they are in fact thoughtless and insensitive — and not funny at all. To anybody I’ve offended, I’m profoundly and deeply sorry, and I regret and apologize for any injury they might have caused.”
Amy Pascal via Variety
“The content of my emails were insensitive and inappropriate but are not an accurate reflection of who I am,” she said. “Although this was a private communication that was stolen, I accept full responsibility for what I wrote and apologize to everyone who was offended.”