Friday 20 July 2018

Hollywood creators and stars criticise Fox News over family separation coverage

One of the creators of Modern Family said he will be leaving Fox as a result.

Paul Feig (Ian West/PA)
Paul Feig (Ian West/PA)

By Laura Harding, Press Association Senior Entertainment Correspondent

Director Paul Feig, Modern Family co-creator Steven Levitan and actor Adam Scott are among the Hollywood industry figures who have slammed Fox News’s coverage of the US’s controversial immigration practice.

Producers and directors who have made films with 20th Century Fox or TV shows made with Fox Studio have expressed their disgust at the coverage of children being separated from their parents at the border.

Steven Levitan, the co-creator of sitcom Modern Family said he would no longer work with the company when the show comes to and end.

He wrote on Twitter: “Fox Studio has been a wonderful home for most of my career – so many amazing people there who share the concerns about @FoxNews but aren’t in the position to speak out.

“I have no problem with fact-based conservatism (such as WSJ), but @FoxNew’s 23-hour-a-day support of the NRA, conspiracy theories and Trump’s lies gets harder to swallow every day as I drive onto that lot to make a show about inclusion.

“I look forward to seeing #ModernFamily through to the end and then, sale or no sale, setting up shop elsewhere.”

He had previously said that the policy of placing children in detention centres away from their parents was “the opposite of what Modern Family stands for”.

Paul Feig, who has directed the Melissa McCarthy-starring comedies Spy and The Heat for 20th Century Fox, also condemned the Fox News Channel.

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Paul Feig (Ian West/PA)

He wrote on Twitter: “I have made two films for 20th Century Fox and love the people in the movie and TV divisions.

“But I too cannot condone the support their news division promotes toward the immoral and abusive policies and actions taken by this current administration toward immigrant children.”

Adam Scott, the star of Fox sitcom Ghosted, wrote: “As a ⁦FOX employee I’m disgusted by ⁦@FoxNews⁩ and their support for & blatant lying about state-sponsored child abuse.”

Liz Meriwether, the creator of sitcom New Girl, which aired on Fox, wrote: “I am horrified and disgusted and furious. I don’t know what adding my voice ultimately means to the powers that be, but I have to speak out. This must stop.”

The outcry comes after Fox News host Laura Ingraham called child detention centres at the US-Mexico border “essentially summer camps,” later amending her description to “boarding schools”.

James Gunn, the director of Guardians Of The Galaxy, said he would not work for Fox until there is a change at the news division.

Praising Levitan’s move, he wrote: “I’d hope more people on the creative side of things who are financially able to do this would follow suit.

“As a content creator I’ve done work for Fox in the past, but will no longer until @FoxNews becomes a source of actual news, conservative or not.”

Director Judd Apatow, who is responsible for Knocked Up, Trainwreck, The 40-Year-Old Virgin and This Is 40, has called on all Fox creatives to speak out about the news coverage.

He wrote: “Where are the Fox stars and executives speaking up?! Imagine if it was your kids. Who has a movie, TV show, sporting event, news show at Fox?

“How can you remain silent when they promote these policies?”

Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane has also said he is “embarrassed” to work for Fox.

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Seth MacFarlane (Ian West/PA)

He replied to a tweet quoting Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s on-air suggestion that viewers should discount any other news sources besides Fox News.

MacFarlane said: In other words, don’t think critically, don’t consult multiple news sources, and in general, don’t use your brain. Just blindly obey Fox News. This is fringe shit, and it’s business like this that makes me embarrassed to work for this company.”

Press Association

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