Boo hoo for Hollywood

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Making Sense by Michael Reagan

What happened the other night at the Academy Awards show really saddened me.

After all, I’m a child of Hollywood as much as I am a child of politics.

My mother Jane Wyman was a major player in Hollywood – best actress Oscar, two stars on the Walk of Fame, handprints in the cement in front of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.

She was a little girl from St. Joseph, Missouri, who made it big in Hollywood, where she worked in more than 80 movies and later starred on TV.

In 1948 she won her Oscar for best actress for playing a teenage deaf-mute raped in “Johnny Belinda. In 1951 she was nominated for her role in “The Blue Veil” and again in 1954 for “Magnificent Obsession.”

For basically the first half of my life I looked at my mother’s Oscar for “Johnny Belinda” on display at her house.

In those days, when the Academy would commission oil portraits of the best actor and actress winners, the beautiful painting of my mother as she appeared in the role of Belinda hung above her fireplace.

When my mother would ask me – as she did when she was still only in her late 30s – what I wanted her to leave me when she died, I told her all I wanted was “Belinda.”

When she died in 2007 I got the painting and today it hangs in a wonderful spot in my house. I’m so proud of it, I show it to everyone who comes in.

When my mother was being nominated for Oscars and regularly attending the Academy Awards, the event was a class act that deserved to be called “a ceremony.”

Despite the famous excesses and sexy scandals of pre-TV Tinseltown, the night was a dignified celebration of great movies and iconic people you respected.

It wasn’t a low-class affair where actors got away with hitting other actors in the face, yelling f-bombs from their tables or abusing their time on stage to preach their simplistic liberal politics or signal their superior virtue.

It’s bad enough that Hollywood’s creative community has ruined its annual awards night, but now the movie industry has announced it’s going to implement a woke quota system.

The liberals in charge of Hollywood will soon be requiring movie producers to employ minimum numbers of people of color or members of the LGBTQ community before their films can even be eligible to be voted on by Academy members for an Oscar.

In other words, it’s not going to be the quality of your film or the great acting or directing that wins you honors.

It’s going to be making sure your movie meets the required color, gender and sexual-orientation quotas.

This is the kind of madness already being implemented at Disney that would drive my father to tears.

In 1955 he, Art Linkletter and Robert Cummings cut the ribbon and officially opened Disneyland on live TV.

But today the company that has built itself into a global cultural power by entertaining our children has become embarrassingly woke.

It has been removing the recorded “gendered greetings” at its theme parks and replacing “ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls” with a more “inclusive” welcome addressed to “Dreamers of all ages.”

And this week a video emerged of a Disney executive producer boasting that she has been pushing a “not-at-all-secret gay agenda” for children’s animation.

It’s a sad day in America that this is how low we – and Hollywood – have gone.

I’m just glad my parents are dead so they don’t have to watch what has happened to the movie industry they loved.

Copyright 2022 Michael Reagan, distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.

Michael Reagan, the son of President Ronald Reagan, is an author, speaker and president of the Reagan Legacy Foundation. Send comments to [email protected] and follow @reaganworld on Twitter.