The Way It Was in Hollywood
On November 9, 1961, Samuel Goldwyn, the head of Samuel Goldwyn Studios, wrote a letter to Producer/Director Jerry Wald at 20th Century Fox. The letter reads, in part, as follows:
Today we are at a very crucial period in history. Even if the cold war never develops into a hot one, our country still has its hands full all over the world. The pictures we send abroad have an effect in every corner of the globe.
Therefore, I feel we must exercise today a higher degree of self-discipline and self-censorship then ever before. We should never lose sight of the fact that, no matter how entertaining a picture may be or how much money it may make, it can do our country a great deal of harm if it plays into the hands of our enemies. [emphasis added] No one among us can serve as another’s conscience – but that is why it behooves every one of us to look at ourselves critically and completely honestly. We have a great responsibility in this regard – far greater than almost any other segment of our country – and we have to guide ourselves accordingly.
Naturally, what I feel in this regard is carried over into my opinion regarding the subject of film festivals which you mention.
Samuel Goldwyn must be turning in his grave to see his admonition ignored by today’s Hollywood, as anti-American picture after anti-American picture is released and plays into the hands of our enemies.