Meryl Streep calls Walt Disney a gender bigot and anti-Semite
MANILA, Philippines – Veteran Hollywood actress Meryl Streep's speech at National Board of Review gala in New York on January 7 spread ike wildfire after she labeled late animator Walt Disney a "gender bigot" and a "hideous anti-Semite" during her tributal speech for fellow actress Emma Thompson.
Thompson is starring in "Saving Mr Banks" – a film based on Walt Disney's pursuit of the rights to Mary Poppins. Various news websites have already reported on how Streep praised Thompson and even called her a "saint." However, towards the latter part of her speech, Streep reportedly attacked the dead animator with a tirade about his anti-Semitic and gender-biased views.
To prove her point, she quoted a letter apparently written by Disney, to a female aspiring animator: "Women do not do any of the creative work in connection with preparing the cartoons for the screen, as that task is performed entirely by young men."
Streep also told the audience of how Walter Kimball, a close colleague of Disney's, once said that the late genius did not trust women and cats.
She also mentioned how Disney was involved in forming and supporting an anti-Semitic industry lobby back in the day. Allegations that Disney was an anti-Semite go way back after Jewish stereotypes, some derogatory, were shown in some of his early productions.
Creative people are odd
However, Streep did try to soften the issue by saying that "most creative people are often odd, or irritating, eccentric, damaged, difficult. That, along with enormous creativity come certain deficits in humanity or decency," and went on to compare Disney to Mozart, Van Gogh, Tarantino, and Eminem.
But was she in the right place to say such things?
HollywoodReporter.com reported that a number of people present during Streep's speech were disappointed. The website quoted one male Academy member who reportedly said: “What a silly woman! How the hell does she say that? Pick on a dead guy whom she didn’t know.”
Her speech, glorifying Thompson as a fellow "rabid, man-eating feminist," comes days before the Golden Globe Awards where Thompson is nominated for the Best Actress award.
What do you think about her speech? Was Streep right to call out the late animator in the error of his ways when he was alive? – Rappler.com