Thursday, May 13, 2010
‘Machete‘ has fallen into controversy, and it’s still months away from its September release. 20th Century Fox, which won a ‘bidding war’ to distribute the film, pulled Rodriguez’ fiery “Illegal” trailer from the web shortly after its special “Cinco de Mayo” message created a storm of controversy and fueled attacks, including one from its sister subsidiary Fox News. Fox News, in turn, pulled the critical article from circulation, entitled “Violent Movie Declares War on Arizona for Immigration Law.”
Worst of all, Robert Rodriguez’ incendiary race film ‘Machete‘ was made, in part, with help from tax incentives and location access provided by the Texas Film Commission, a division of Governor Rick Perry’s Office. A spokesperson from the organization confirmed that Rodriguez indeed applied for the program and that all of his Troublemaker Studios films have been part of it.
The film, originally based on a largely satirical mock-trailer inserted into Rodriguez & Taratino’s Grindhouse, has expanded into full production, and developed a message that many have criticized as glorifying a race war. Among those critics are two anonymous crew members from the production– who happen to be Hispanic– that came forward to warn Alex confidentially about the upsetting script. Further, two individuals who were privy to early screenings of ‘Machete’ have warned that the film is far more racially inflammatory than either the trailer or leaked script have indicated.
By contrast, films like Waco were denied taxpayer-funded resources for fears that it cast Texas in a bad light. Attempting to shed the light of truth on one of Texas’ most infamous and controversial episodes is bad, but stoking the fires of racial conflict somehow does Texas “good”?
Yet, no issue has been made of using Texas Film Commission resources to fund Rodriguez’ racist treatise. Why does such a production warrant the support of the people of the State of Texas? Will people standby as as tax breaks and other value resources are poured into the creation of divisive, reductive and ultimately offensive portrayal of Mexicans and Americans, white, black, brown or otherwise.
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In addition to state funds, Robert Rodriguez has long had use of the state & city funded studios based at the former Austin airport. His Troublemaker Studios utilizes the Austin Studios facilities, which is managed by the Austin Film Society. Are racial-revenge fantasies the intended use of such publicly and community supported institutions?
Let the Texas Film Commission and other related entities know whether or not you support taxpayer funds going towards the production of ‘Machete’ and other films like it:
P.O. Box 13246
Austin, TX 78711
(512) 463-4114 FAX
This article was posted: Thursday, May 13, 2010 at 11:53 am