Entertainment execs condemn threats against Netflix by Boycott Israel movement

By April 3, 2018Blog Post

Dear Mr. Sarandos and Mr. Friedlander,

As the Chief Content Officer and Vice President of Original Series for Netflix, you’ve surely heard that Fauda, the hit Israeli television series which is distributed by Netflix and dramatizes the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, has found itself in an unusual situation. The anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement has threatened to sue Netflix if you don’t drop the show, which they claim encourages the “violation of international law and human rights.”

As an organization comprised of prominent members of the entertainment industry dedicated to promoting the arts as a means to peace and to defending artistic freedom, we at Creative Community For Peace (CCFP) want you to know that we stand behind you and Netflix in the face of this blatant attempt at artistic censorship.

The BDS movement seeks to isolate Israel in the cultural, academic, economic, and diplomatic arenas. Its myopic and simplistic anti-Israel worldview is threatened by the worldwide exposure Netflix has generated for Fauda’s nuanced portrayal of issues related to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.

This worldview was evident in the letter BDS wrote to Netflix, in which they continued their habit of using inaccurate and inflammatory language, such as “colonialist” and “apartheid,” to describe Israel. As always, they assign every evil imaginable to Israel, while absolving the Palestinians of any and all responsibility or agency.

On the other hand, Lior Raz and Avi Issacharoff, Fauda’s co-creators, go out of their way to show the conflict — and the individuals caught up in the conflict — in all its complexity. Mr. Raz, for example, has said that he sometimes sits down with his Arab actors to rewrite scenes when they feel their characters are incorrectly portrayed.

This is the power of this show — and the reason it attracts legions of fans from around the world — which mirrors the power of the arts in general; they bring up difficult but important conversations, expanding our horizons and allowing us to experience different points of view. We wish the BDS movement would join us and the creators of Fauda — and Netflix, of course, for distributing Fauda — in striving for understanding and dialogue, which is the only path to peace.

“It’s a shame that the BDS movement continues in its campaign of divisiveness and hatred toward Israelis instead of focusing on other messages,” the show’s producer told The Wrap, referring to their demand. “It’s a shame they don’t see the messages we get from people in Turkey, Qatar, Dubai and other Arab countries who talk about how this series opened their eyes in regards to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. People who once hated anything to do with Israel have been exposed to the complexity of the conflict and the humanity on both sides.”

Sadly, attempts to block true understanding and instead force a black and white, good versus evil view of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict upon the world are nothing new for BDS. In threatening to sue Netflix for distributing a television series with which they disagree, they have simply taken those attempts to the next level of absurdity.

We have every confidence that you and Netflix will disregard these threats and stand behind the show. We offer our assistance if ever you should need it.

Sincerely,

Jason Adelman, Head of Brand Strategy and Business Development, Habana Avenue

Orly Adelson, President of Orly Adelson Productions

Marty Adelstein, CEO of Tomorrow Studios

Michael Adler, Partner of Lichter, Grossman, Nichols, Adler & Feldman

Craig Balsam, Co-Founder of Razor & Tie Entertainment

Richard Baskind, Partner and Head of Music at Simons Muirhead & Burton

Aton Ben-Horin, Global head of A&R a Warner Music Group

Steven Bensusan, President of Blue Note Entertainment Group

Adam Berkowitz, Sr Television Agent at CAA

Josh Binder, Partner of Rothenberg, Mohr, and Binder, LLP

David Byrnes, Partner of Ziffren, Brittenham, LLP

Civia Caroline, President of Clic Entertainment

Josh Deutsch, Chairman/CEO of Downtown Records

David Draiman, Musician

Craig Emanuel, Partner of Loeb & Loeb LLP

Ron Fair, Record Producer and Former Chief Creative Officer and Executive VP of Virgin Americans

Marc Fineman, Founder and CEO of FINE

Erica Forster, Entertainment Industry Executive

Gary Foster, Principal of Krasnoff Foster Productions

Daryl Friedman, Chief Advocacy & Industry Relations Officer of The Recording Academy / GRAMMYs on the Hill

Andrew Genger, Red Light Entertainment

Gary Gersh, President of Global Talent at AEG Presents

Jody Gerson, Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Publishing Group

Gary Ginsberg, Executive Vice President of Corporate Marketing and Communications of Time Warner Inc.

Daniel Glass, President and Founder of Glassnote Entertainment Group

David Glick, Founder and CEO of Edge Group

Andrew Gould, Music Executive

Trudy Green, Trudy Green Management/HK Management

Ari Ingel, Denovo Music

Neil Jacobson, President, Geffen Records

Larry Katz, Entertainment Attorney

Zach Katz, Chief Creative Officer of BMG Chrysalis, North America

Amanda Kogan, WME

Rick Krim, West Coast President of Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Colin Lester, CEO of JEM Artists

David Levy, William Morris Endeavor Entertainment (WME)

David Lonner, CEO of Oasis Media Group

Ben Maddahi, President of Unrestricted

Scott Packman, Esquire

Donald S. Passman, Partner of Gang, Tyre, Ramer, and Brown, Inc.

Dean Raise, Manager at C3 Presents

David Renzer, Chairman of Spirit Music Group and Former Chairman/CEO of Universal Music Publishing Group

Hanna Rochelle, Founder and President of Lyric Culture

Rick Rosen, Head of Television Department at William Morris Endeavor Entertainment (WME)

Steve Schnur, Worldwide Executive and Music President of Electronic Arts

Sam Schwartz, Co-Principal of Gorfaine/Schwartz Agency

Paul Schindler, Senior Chair of the New York Entertainment and Media Practice, Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Ben Silverman, Chairman and Co-chief Executive Officer of Propagate Content

Ralph Simon, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Mobilium Global Limited

Jeff Sosnow, SVP Artist and Repertoire at Warner Music Group

Gary Stiffelman, Partner of Greenberg Traurig LLP

Aaron Symonds, Film Composer

Traci Szymanski, President of Co-Star Entertainment/Israelife Media Group

Adam Taylor, President of APM Music.

Sharon Tal Yguado, Head of Event Series at Amazon

Jonathan Yunger, Co-President of Millenium Media

 

*Please note that all companies are listed for affiliation only.

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