The Walt Disney Company is the parent company of ABC, Marvel Studios, Pixar Animation, Hulu, Starz, Fox Searchlight, ESPN, Lucasfilm and 20th Century Fox. And those are just the major ones they own.
ABC also owns the rights to broadcasting many basketball games including the NBA Finals and we all know how hypocritical those in the league have been in the face of the pro-Democracy protests currently going on in Hong Kong.
And Disney CEO Bob Iger just became the latest in the sea of hypocrites over the China controversy.
The rampant support for pro-Democracy Hong Kong protestors in America boiled to the surface after a single tweet from Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey.
Morey tweeted a graphic supporting the protestors, which was subsequently deleted after the People’s Republic of China quickly condemned, not only him, but also the whole NBA for what they would claim was support for the wrong side.
The NBA was forced to address the issue. Commissioner Adam Silver tried to diffuse the situation, acknowledging every American’s First Amendment rights to Free Speech while expressing support for Communist China as well.
NBA superstar players James Harden and LeBron James were the only two players to directly comment on the issue. Harden swiftly apologized to the Chinese people but LeBron took it a step further by condemning Morey’s tweet and even claiming he was “misinformed” on the issue. All other players were silent.
But outspoken Golden State Warriors head coach, who normally has no problem criticizing American issues, said, “A lot of us don’t know what to make of it, it’s something I’m reading about… but I’m not going to comment. What I’ve found is that it’s easy to speak on issues that I’m passionate about and that I feel like I’m well-versed on and I’ve found that it makes the most sense to stick to topics that fall in that category.”
Kerr’s not passionate about Democratic values then? That figures.
Outside of the aforementioned people, everyone else has been keeping their mouths shut. It just goes to show you how hypocritical these players concerned with politics and social justice issues in America really are.
But if you think those players and executives in the NBA are hypocrites, Hollywood executives have been hypocrites for years. Particularly, Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger, who has been altering Disney’s movies for years in order to appease Chinese censors.
Amidst the swirling backlash against the NBA, Iger has been silence because he believes the position would “harm our company.”
Iger was recently asked about his position at the Wall Street Journal’s Tech Live conference on Tuesday.
He responded, “What we learned in the last week – we’ve learned how complicated this is. The biggest learning from that is that caution is imperative. To take a position that could harm our company in some form would be a big mistake. I just don’t believe it’s something we should engage in a public manner.”
No kidding. If you do engage then you’re risking the billions Disney makes every year. Without China, “Avengers: Endgame” wouldn’t have finally become the highest grossing film ever made, surpassing “Avatar.” It’s not just “Avengers: Endgame,” either. Disney also had “Captain Marvel,” “Spider-Man: Far From Home,” “Toy Story 4” and the upcoming “Frozen 2.” Oh, and don’t forget about “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” later this year too.
They need China. Let’s not fool ourselves that Iger’s silence is anything other than worrying about Disney’s bottom line.