Screenwriter Says Hollywood Conservatives ‘Have to Meet in Secret’ and ‘Talk in Whispers’
Klavan, in an exclusive interview with CNSNews.com, explained that he and fellow conservatives in Hollywood are battling the liberal status quo by creating entertainment that reflects the values held by the majority of Americans.
And things are changing for the better, he said, pointing to the best-picture Oscar nomination for the Christian-themed film “The Blind Side” and Sandra Bullock’s win as best actress in the movie.
There is a political/social shift occurring in Hollywood, Klavan told CNSNews.com, adding, “I think we’re changing it. It’s not something that’s happening passively. It’s something that’s happening because people are really making noise.”
“I have nothing against atheists or left-wingers making movies,” Klavan said. “I think everybody should be able to make movies. I simply think this kind of lock-step conformity that has become the default position of American intellectuals has to go. It’s bad for the arts. It’s bad for our intellectual conversation.”
The Hollywood culture, Klavan said, has made it difficult for conservatives to be successful and promote their own brand of entertainment product.
“There’s a culture in Hollywood where you are a left-winger; you can speak very openly – even in business meetings,” Klavan said. “If you’re a conservative, especially a religious person, people have to meet in secret. They talk in whispers. It’s a very disturbing kind of culture.”
Klavan also mentioned the experience of Academy Award-winning actor Denzel Washington’s experience in making the movie, “The Book of Eli,” which is about a post-apocalyptic world where the hero’s mission is to protect the last remaining Bible.
“When Denzel Washington recently made a film called ‘The Book of Eli’ – and Washington is a Christian and he made a film about a post-apocalyptic world in which he’s fighting to save the Bible, fighting to save the last copy of the Bible – the studio kept coming to him and saying, ‘Could you cut out some of the references to the Bible? Could you cut out some of the religious references?’” said Klavan.
“And I thought, ‘Why, are you afraid of making too much money? What’s the problem?” he said.
Klavan explained, as is well-documented, that many of the traditional, pro-family, and pro-religious movies are usually very financially successful in Hollywood. But many producers and directors do not like to make the films regardless of their potential for success.
Klavan said in his own career he has tried to “change the rules” by creating compelling books and films that feature characters who share the same beliefs and values of most Americans.
Two of his crime novels, "True Crime" and "Don’t Say a Word" were made into films starring Clint Eastwood and Michael Douglas, respectively. His screenplays include “Shock to the System” starring Michael Caine, and “One Missed Call.”
And now his series of books for young adults, "The Homelanders," has been optioned by Summit Entertainment, maker of the “Twilight” film series and the film that won the 2010 Oscar for best picture, “The Hurt Locker.”
The hero of the series, teenager Charlie West, is a Christian and an American patriot with a black belt in karate whose adventures include fighting Islamic extremists and trying to clear his name after he’s charged with murder.
Klavan was in Washington, D.C., on Monday, to speak at a conference about intellectual property rights as it pertains to artists whose work is stolen online.
But the real threat, as Klavan sees it, is the Democrats who are in control in the White House and Congress.
“I think it’s a really very sinister and bad development,” Klavan said when asked about current events in the nation’s capital. “I don’t think the people involved are necessarily sinister and bad, but I think they are misguided.”
“They believe in a philosophy that has already been shown to be destructive and not to work,” Klavan said. “They are people who don’t understand the basic values of our country, the basic values of a bottom-up government, of the consent of the governed, of limited government, of a government who doesn’t do things for you -- that says you have to do these things for yourself.”
Klavan also said he is a fan of the tea party movement, which he said is made up of regular Americans who want limited government and support the Constitution.