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Meryl Streep: ‘Walt Disney Was a Sexist and Anti-Semite’

meryl streep

I adore Meryl Streep, as I’ve said a million times before. She’s just brilliant. She’s classy, she’s sassy and she doesn’t give a shit if you don’t like what she has to say. That’s why I think it’s hilarious that while presenting an award to the likewise lovely Emma Thompson at the National Board of Review dinner in New York City on Tuesday, Meryl let her know exactly what she thinks of her film Saving Mr. Banks and the man the movie was about.

Here’s a bit of how it went down, according to Entertainment Weekly:

“Emma considers very carefully what the f–k she is putting out in the culture. Emma thinks, ‘Is this helpful?’ Not, ‘Will it build my brand?’ Not, ‘Will it give me billions?’ Not, ‘Does this express me, me, me in my unique and fabulous itself into all eternity in every universe for all time?’ That’s a phrase from my Disney contract in my last movie. I’m serious.”

Streep then couldn’t resist returning to Disney the man: “Disney, who brought joy arguably to billions of people was, perhaps, or had some racist proclivities. He formed and supported an anti-Semitic industry lobbying group and he was certainly, on the evidence of his company’s policies, a gender bigot,” she said, before reading an actual 1938 letter from Disney rejecting a female applicant to the animation trainee program. “When I saw the film, I could just imagine Walt Disney’s chagrin at having to cultivate P.L. Travers’ favor for the 20 years that it took to secure the rights to her work. It must have killed him to encounter in a woman an equally disdainful and superior creature, a person dismissive of his own considerable gifts and prodigious output and imagination.”

Ugh, are you swooning just reading this? I am. Admittedly I don’t know a lot about Walt Disney, but I do know of his legacy and what a wonderful one it has been. Also, I did watch Saving Mr. Banks and really loved it – and cried my eyes out, incidentally. It was really lovely film, even if it did gloss over some of the more unsavoury bits of Walt Disney’s life. But hey, shitty people make relatively good art all the time. It happens.

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16 CommentsLeave a comment

  • FFFFT. Mery Streep is the only piece of shit bloviating stupidity here. By the way, ugly pair of glasses on her as well.

    Meryl, like most liberal morons, can’t figure out that society’s attitudes were MUCH different in the 1930’s, when Walt Disney wrote that letter about hiring the female cartoonist. Her intelligence level is about on par with a whiny child’s. What an fucking idiot.

      • That the best you can do, whine about a typo? The only one whining is YOU. Sorry you can’t respond intelligently.

    • So because it was a little while ago it make it okay to be racist and sexist,a bigot it a bigot no matter what time it was in ,just like Hitler it still a monster then and now .

    • Yeah she comes off as a real blow hard. Spike Lee has gone off on Disney over the years too (and Seth MacFarlane’s regular bashing is getting really tiresome) claiming that he was a racist. A black animator confronted him one day and said to him “I knew Walt Disney and you don’t know what you’re talking about”.

      The fact that Streep went on her long winded and condescending rant during an awards presentation shows that even when speaking elegantly you can still come off as having very little class. Her level of narcissism is staggering. She’s good a pretend for the camera though,

      • Gee Roger, does the content of my comment escape you? Do you not realize that anti-semitism, as well as thinking of women as less than men, were common “truisms” back in the 1930’s?

        Of course, retroactively applying today’s political correctness to cultural mores almost 80 years in the past just makes the commenter (i.e. Meryl Streep) look like an idiot, NOT Disney.

        Here’s another secret to let you in on – gays were reviled too in the 1930’s. Maybe next Meryl can enlighten us about that with her retroactive stupidity when looking at long past cultural attitudes.

  • Hitler adored Disney for his ability to control the population through his creations. Disney sent Hitler 12 films as a gift. Disney is one of the most evil companies on Earth currently. Their manufacturing utilizes child labor, sweat shops etc. Remember that next time you buy some pink princess plastic item. Their stories are corrupt. They always kill the Mother in any film involving a Prince or a Princess or the Mother is of no help to the main character.

    Disney was an evil man. People who worked for him can attest to this – especially the females who were only allowed to color, not draw. Did you know that Disney couldn’t draw? One of his artists taught him to draw a Mickey mouse head eventually – for show.

  • The relevant point is “What are the Disney company’s policies now”, not “What did Walt D. say in 1938.” I suspect that if you could find out what your parents or grandparents were saying in 1938……they wouldn’t be any more enlightened than Walt D. was. And some time in the future you yourself may be condemned for things you say and do today that are completely normal in this time.

  • Way to keep it classy Streep? True or not about Walt why did she need to shit all over Emma’s night? Big talk from Streep when she is doing a Disney film as she speaks. Into the Woods !!!

  • ‘WALT DISNEY was the
    ————————Hollywood ever produced.”

    SO much for the terminally ‘on board’,
    dwindling and, frankly, precious and
    forgettable —-STREEP.