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article imagePew Poll Shows Only 33% of Americans View Hollywood Favorably

By Johnny Simpson     Apr 21, 2010 in Entertainment
In a recent Pew poll, only 33% of Americans polled view the Hollywood entertainment industry favorably. That is a lower score than for President Bush when he left office. Worse, 51% of Americans polled hold a negative view of the industry. Major bad PR.
Here are the results of the recent Pew Poll released on Sunday, now linked and being reported on in-depth at Breitbart's Big Hollywood entertainment industry blog.
Here is the relevant excerpt from the subsection of the poll titled, "It's Not Just Government."
While anti-government sentiment has its own ideological and partisan basis, the public also expresses discontent with many of the country’s other major institutions...the marks are only slightly more positive for the national news media (31%) labor unions (32%) and the entertainment industry (33%).
In the sweeping and highly detailed report on polled Americans' widespread discontent with the federal government and other public institutions like unions, the entertainment industry poll is a shocker. This means that more people favored President Bush as he left office as favor the Hollywood entertainment industry today. That can't help but be a real embarrassment to the same Hollywood film industry that went to all-out ideological war with President Bush during his administration, then helped propel Barack Obama to the Presidency in his place.
The Pew poll reveals only the embarrassingly low approval ratings by positive or negative results. So why are the polls so abysmal for an industry that has long been beloved by most Americans? A pinnacle of our culture in many ways? Perhaps the steady stream of widely reported and highly controversial news stories involving famous Hollywood A-listers has had a negative overall impact. The Roman Polanski petition, widely supported by many of the film industry's top names but greatly opposed by a wide majority of Americans. Actor Tom Hanks' statement that America's war in the Pacific against the genocidal Imperial Japanese was one of racism and terror on both sides. Actor Sean Penn declaring on The Bill Maher Show that journalists who criticize Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez should be thrown in jail, and further wishing that his own critics should die screaming of rectal cancer. Actress Megan Fox calling middle American audiences stupid for not understanding, appreciating or attending her feminist/lesbian horror flick Jennifer's Body, which bombed at the box office.
Former Will and Grace star Megan Mullally declaring NBC late night host Jay Leno insane for hosting Sarah Palin and trying to appeal to red state viewers. There have been many other highly public incidents and statements as well. In each case, the film artists in question have either offended audiences or gone hard against the grain of majority American public opinion. This poll may reflect the less-than-positive impact these highly public and even toxic news stories are having. Hollywood A-listers are, of course, free to voice whatever opinions and statements they like under the First Amendment. But when Americans were free to voice their own opinions to Pew, it would appear some of that speech has come at a high price in the marketplace of public opinion. For an industry in which PR and marketing are coins of the realm, this poll should be a brutal wake-up call. One obvious place for Hollywood film artists to start would be a new PR policy with public opinion in mind: "First, do no harm."
More about Pew poll, Hollywood, Academy motion picture arts, Tom hanks, Sean penn
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