And in the latest ‘True Hollywood Story’: Jon Voight was on campus for a Republican event last night at a little lecture hall near the classroom where I had Entertainment Marketing class. Our instructor was formerly the head of marketing at a number of studios and, thus, knows everyone in Hollywood (or so it seems). During break he invited Jon to swing by class on his way out.
There was a knock on the door at about 9:00pm and in walked Oscar-winner Jon Voight. I felt bad for him at first, since he was more-or-less put on the spot by the instructor to give us a little speech. Given the circumstances, he didn’t do half bad, talking about the importance of entrepreneurs in Hollywood. In particular, pointing out those who create ways to get him and others like him a paycheck. His remarks had a good message regarding collaboration and he got some laughs.
This was all fine and dandy, until he started going on a tangent about us having freedom to do as we please and aim for our dreams – not surprising for him to spin, given his push for Republican candidates.
Then he started telling a German girl in the class about how great it was that the U.S. turned that country around. He concluded by implying that the rise of Obama is eerily like the rise of Hitler, pointing to both being guys with an ambiguous agendas.
People were stunned, even the Republicans in the room. Then Jon left.
After Jon left, I was somewhat relieved when the instructor whispered to us how we’d seen tonight an “Example of why actors are usually best to speak with a script and why it isn’t appropriate that they think themselves knowing everything…. and why they should usually stay out of politics.”
Class wrapped up with an Arnold Schwarzenegger story that had nothing to do with politics. It was about how a lawyer screw-up lead to Arnold getting an extra $5 million on a deal that was originally for only $1 million when creating the “Terminator 3-D” ride at Universal Studios Theme Park.