What do spoof western Blazing Saddles, cross-dressing comedy Tootsie, boxing drama Rocky and The Wizard of Oz have in common?
Apart from being hugely successful, much-loved films, no connection may spring to mind. But according to a new expose of the chilling effect that ‘wokeness’ has had on Hollywood, all are now ‘verboten’ in industry circles.
Blazing Saddles (co-written by black comedian Richard Pryor) sends up racism with its black sheriff protagonist; Tootsie’s Dustin Hoffman pretends to be a woman to get acting work; Rocky’s bad guy is black; and The Wizard of Oz hired people with dwarfism to play its Munchkins.
Which means none of these classic movies would stand any chance of getting commissioned today, according to prominent directors and writers.