62.6 F
Fort Worth
Saturday, December 5, 2020
Culture 'Wind River' filmmakers - one from Fort Worth - take control back...

‘Wind River’ filmmakers – one from Fort Worth – take control back from Weinstein

Other News

Exxon’s oil slick

Exxon Mobil is slashing its capital spending budget for 2020 by 30% due to weak demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and a market...

Folk music’s Mark Twain: 7 Essential tracks from John Prine,

NEW YORK (AP) — Some people, the songs just come out of them. For nearly half a century, they tumbled out of John Prine...

Tarrant County records another COVID-19 death

Tarrant County Public Health (TCPH) on Wednesday, April 8 reported that a resident of Euless has died as the result of the COVID-19 virus....

Tradition stymied: A year unlike any since WWII for Augusta

The Masters is so intertwined with Augusta, they added an extra day to spring break.You see, the first full week of April isn't just...

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Like an avenging character straight out of one of his films, writer-director Taylor Sheridan, who grew up in Fort Worth, said he was not going to let “Wind River” stay in Harvey Weinstein’s control.

The Weinstein Co. acquired his film and released it theatrically in August, positioning the Elizabeth Olsen and Jeremy Renner drama as a possible awards contender. But Sheridan’s film was about sexual violence against young women on a tribal reservation, and suddenly Weinstein was being accused of similar things.

For Sheridan, a 47-year-old native Texan who wrote “Sicaro” and was nominated for an Oscar for writing the working class revenge tale “Hell or High Water,” it was an unacceptable situation that had to be rectified.

So in an extraordinary move fitting of this uncharted time for Hollywood, not only did he and his producers get their film back from The Weinstein Co., but they also scrubbed the Weinstein name off it completely and ensured that neither of the Weinstein brothers would see a penny of future profits. Those will now be donated to National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center, a non-profit organization devoted to enhancing the safety of Native women. The Weinstein name will not appear on awards screeners, the home video release, which is being handled by Lionsgate, or its Netflix release.

Acacia Entertainment, an entity of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe, which also financed the production of the film, has also stepped in to pay for and attempt to salvage the awards run.

It is one of a few examples of individuals in Hollywood acting quickly in recent weeks to distance themselves from the stain of association with alleged sexual harassers. One of the more high profile examples is director Ridley Scott re-shooting Kevin Spacey’s scenes from his film “All the Money in the World” and replacing the disgraced actor with Christopher Plummer six weeks before the film is to hit theaters.

In the case of “Wind River,” when the allegations started surfacing against Weinstein in early October, Sheridan and his producers Matthew George and Basil Iwanyk put their heads together to figure out what to do.

“We feel like this was taken under false pretenses, especially if anyone knew what the guy at the head of this company was up to and given the subject matter of our film, it’s just horrendous,” George said. “You should have never taken a film that is shining a light on the very subject that this guy is guilty of perpetrating.”

They were under pressure, like many, to make a statement about Weinstein, but Sheridan didn’t want the empty gesture of words. He called David Glasser, the president and COO of The Weinstein Company, to make some demands.

“I said, ‘I’m going to make an offer to you and you’re going to accept it because it’s the right thing to do, and you’ll get absolutely nothing back from it. But the one thing you will do is you’ll allow this story to be told,'” Sheridan recalled telling him.

And it worked.

“Taylor is a force to be reckoned with and he can win most arguments like most great directors,” George said. “He certainly was not going to lose this one.”

An email sent to a Weinstein Co. representative was not returned Wednesday.

“Wind River’s” awards prospects might not be the most promising even now that it’s divorced from the Weinstein name, however.

Gregory Ellwood, the editor-at-large of The Playlist who covers the awards races, notes that the categories it will compete in — best picture, best director and best original screenplay — are, “Highly competitive this year.” But the fact that Sheridan had a previous nomination could work to his benefit.

“It’s never too late to get in the game, but they certainly have a tougher task ahead of them because of the change,” Ellwood said. “Other studios with major contenders have been planning and executing their strategies since September.”

For Sheridan, it’s simply about keeping the film and the ideas in it in the national conversation — specifically related to the violence against Native American and indigenous women, and the underreported frequency of their disappearances and murders.

“We’re not pushing (these small films) through awards season because we have an empty space on our mantle. When films are recognized for their achievements they live a little longer. People trust that stamp,” Sheridan said. “They watch it and they benefit from it.”


Follow AP Film Writer Lindsey Bahr on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ldbahr


Oh hi there 👋 It’s nice to meet you.

Sign up to receive awesome content in your inbox.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.


Oh hi there 👋
It’s nice to meet you.

Sign up to receive awesome content in your inbox.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Latest News

How the West Wins Panel Discussion set during NFR events

The National Finals Rodeo will be taking place on December 3-12 at the Globe Life Stadium in Arlington, but there are plenty of other...

Mooyah plans expansion with an eye on Fort Worth

Texas and burgers have a long and storied history. Plenty of cattle and all that. The Texas appetite for a burger – both old-fashioned...

Susan Nix: Longtime businesswoman, TCU champion dies

Susan Appleby Nix Longtime Fort Worth business and civic leader and TCU champion Susan Appleby Nix died Thursday, Nov. 26 from complications of COVID-19. Nix,...

Sundance Square Christmas tree brightens up Downtown Fort Worth

 The installation of the 2020 Fort Worth Christmas Tree at Sundance Square is now complete. Due to the pandemic and out of an abundance...

The rise and fall of Tab – after surviving the sweetener scares, the iconic diet soda gets canned

Tab, the Coca-Cola company’s original diet soda brand, is headed to the soda graveyard, joining retired brands such as Like, Leed and Limette. Coca-Cola has...