There's one director who doesn't care what his peers think. While the rest of Hollywood is running away from the state of Georgia in protest of the pro-life "heartbeat bill," which bans abortions the moment a heartbeat is detected, Clint Eastwood and Warner Brothers are staying put for their new film, Richard Jewell.
The studio has explained to the press that the film, based on the true story of the bombing at Atlanta's Centennial Park during the 1996 Summer Olympics, would be best served by geographical authenticity.
“We have made the decision to tell this compelling story — based on real people and events — in the locations where it actually took place, which is in and around Atlanta," Warner Brothers told IndieWire. "As is always the case, we worked closely with our production partners to determine how and where to shoot this film, in order to best reflect authenticity in the storytelling.”
Rebelling along with Eastwood and filming in the Peach State would be his A-list cast, including Oscar winners Sam Rockwell and Kathy Bates, Jon Hamm, Olivia Wilde, and Paul Walter Hauser as Jewell, the police officer and security guard who discovered the bomb at the Olympics.
Other celebrities, chief among them Alyssa Milano, have led the effort to boycott Georgia over Gov. Brian Kemp's signature on the "heartbeat bill." Production companies have nearly heeded those calls and threatened to end all of their Georgia business ventures, including big names like Disney and Netflix.
Former Democratic Georgia lawmaker Stacey Abrams, a progressive hero, has asked these companies to reconsider for the sake of her state's economy.
Eastwood's refusal to succumb to peer pressure shouldn't surprise anyone who watched his controversial conversation with an empty chair at the 2012 Republican National Convention. For several minutes, he pretended to speak to President Obama by way of completely upending his agenda. What other Hollywood heavy hitter would dare to do that?