12 July 2020
HIDE OUT NOW — As the wooden boards are taken down from shopfronts and studio lots grind slowly back to life, Hollywood is basking in an unseasonable heatwave.
The famous boulevards shimmer in 40C haze and warm Santa Ana winds fan the Beverly Hills mansions.
Shaken by #MeToo, paralysed by Covid-19, the $50 billion film industry is finally emerging from a four-month lockdown – only to find a new and very different world, where tension is rising as surely as the thermometer.
For if the very public Black Lives Matter protests have polarised America, the silent fallout has now reached Hollywood.
A revolution is under way. White actors are being fired. Edicts from studio bosses make it clear that only minorities – racial and sexual – can be given jobs.
A new wave of what has been termed by some as anti-white prejudice is causing writers, directors and producers to fear they will never work again. One described the current atmosphere as ‘more toxic than Chernobyl’, with leading actors afraid to speak out amid concern they will be labelled racist. […]