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HomeBollywoodTony Kushner Speaks Out In Support Of Jonathan Glazer's Oscar Speech

Tony Kushner Speaks Out In Support Of Jonathan Glazer’s Oscar Speech

One of America’s most celebrated writers and one of Steven Spielberg’s go-to collaborators spoke out today on Haaretz Podcast about the controversy over Jonathan Glazer‘s speech after Zone of Interest won Best International Feature Film at the Oscars.

Speaking about protests in the U.S. and their impacts, Tony, Emmy and Pulitzer Prize-winner Tony Kushner expressed surprise at what he called, “the blowback after Jonathan Glazer’s really sort of unimpeachable, irrefutable statement at the Oscars.”

Asked if he identified Glazer’s comments, Kushner replied, “Of course, I mean, who doesn’t?”

For context, here is the entirety of Glazer’s speech:

Thank you so much. I’m going to read, I’m afraid.

Thank you to the Academy for this honor and to our partners A24 Films for access and Polish Film Institute, to the Stead Museum for their trust and guidance, to my producers, actors, collaborators.

All our choices were made to reflect and confront us in the present, not to say look what they did then, but rather look what we do now.

Our film shows where dehumanization leads at its worst. It’s shaped all of our past and present. Right now, we stand here as men who refute their Jewishness and the Holocaust being hijacked by an occupation which has led to conflict for so many innocent people.

Whether the victims of October — whether the victims of October the 7th in Israel or the ongoing attack on Gaza, all the victims of this dehumanization, how do we resist? Alexandria, the girl who glows in the film as she did in life, chose to. I dedicate this to her memory and her resistance. Thank you.

“What [Glazer’s] saying is so, is so simple,” maintained Kushner. “He’s saying Jewishness, Jewish identity, Jewish history, the history of the Holocaust, the history of Jewish suffering must not be used in a campaign as an excuse for a project of dehumanizing or slaughtering other people. This is a misappropriation of what it means to be a Jew, what the Holocaust meant, and he rejects that.”

He continued, “Who doesn’t agree with that? What kind of person thinks that what’s going on now in Gaza is acceptable? If you find yourself saying out loud and in public, ‘It’s fine with me ,what they’re doing,” because you feel that it’s your only choice as a Jew is to defend everything Israel does, shame on you.”

Speaking specifically about the situation in the Middle East, Kushner seemed to suggest his views are evolving, in terms of how to respond.

“In my journey over the past five months, I’ve moved closer to the idea that maybe a boycott is necessary, but I can’t do it. I can’t separate myself from Israel.”

The goal, he said, is peace for everyone, including Israelis.

“I want Israelis to be able to live in peace…I believe the occupation in Gaza…all of these things, do not make Israel safe.”

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