LOS ANGELES, USA – Modern Family co-creator Steve Levitan on June 19 became the latest in a string of Hollywood figures berating Fox over its news division's coverage, announcing he was quitting the entertainment giant.
Much of the anger has centered around Fox News's reporting of US President Donald Trump's move to forcibly separate migrant children from their parents at the southern border, which some see as deliberately misleading.
Fox Studio has been a wonderful home for most of my career - so many amazing people there who share the concerns about @FoxNews but aren’t in the position to speak out. — Steve Levitan (@SteveLevitan) June 19, 2018
Levitan tweeted that the cable station's "23-hour-a-day support" of the gun lobby, conservative conspiracy theories and President Donald Trump's falsehoods were "harder to swallow every day as I drive onto that lot to make a show about inclusion."
I look forward to seeing #ModernFamily through to the end and then, sale or no sale, setting up shop elsewhere. — Steve Levitan (@SteveLevitan) June 19, 2018
"I look forward to seeing #ModernFamily through to the end and then, sale or no sale, setting up shop elsewhere," he said.
Levitan, who won 5 consecutive Emmy Awards for the long-running ABC sitcom, had already announced that next year's 10th season would be the last, with his 20th Century Fox Television contract due to expire.
Fox News – which didn't immediately respond to requests for comment – is often criticized for its coverage, but the reverberations are rarely felt in the corridors of parent company 21st Century Fox.
On June 18, Levitan publicly supported actor and filmmaker Seth MacFarlane's comment that he was "embarrassed" to work for Fox.
In other words, don’t think critically, don’t consult multiple news sources, and in general, don’t use your brain. Just blindly obey Fox News. This is fringe shit, and it’s business like this that makes me embarrassed to work for this company. https://t.co/kC7MPYxdgZ — Seth MacFarlane (@SethMacFarlane) June 16, 2018
Fox News anchor Laura Ingraham has come in for particularly vociferous criticism after she described detention centers holding 2,000 immigrant children at the southern border as "essentially summer camps."
Both Ingraham and fellow anchor Sean Hannity – seen as one of Trump's closest unofficial aides – have been hit by advertiser boycotts.
Ghostbusters and Bridesmaids director Paul Feig, who made Spy and The Heat for the studio, also criticized the news coverage.
I have made two films for 20th Century Fox and love the people in the movie and TV divisions. But I too cannot condone the support their news division promotes toward the immoral and abusive policies and actions taken by this current administration toward immigrant children. https://t.co/6JqIQPjepV — Paul Feig (@paulfeig) June 19, 2018
"I too cannot condone the support their news division promotes toward the immoral and abusive policies and actions taken by this current administration toward immigrant children," he said.
Veteran producer Judd Apatow has urged Fox talent to mount pressure on the company over its immigration coverage, demanding of the studio's stars and executives: "Imagine if it was your kids."
Last week, Comcast offered $65 billion for key film and television assets of 21st Century Fox, sparking a tug-of-war with Disney for a deal that could create a dominant media-entertainment power. – Rappler.com