Fact Check

Spielberg Pro-Palestinian Movie

Will an upcoming film from director Steven Spielberg document the current uprising in the West Bank from a pro-Palestinian point of view?

Published Apr 17, 2002

Claim:   An upcoming film from director Steven Spielberg will document the current uprising in the West Bank from a pro-Palestinian point of view.

Status:   False.

Example:   [Collected on the Internet, 2002]

Spielberg to direct feature based on Palestinian Uprising
Fri Apr 12, 2:25 AM ET

By Scott Tom Smittey

LOS ANGELES (The Hollywood Reporter) -- In an announcement from Dream Works, Director Steven Spielberg announced that his latest project documents the current uprising of Palestinians in the Occupied West Bank and Gaza (Intifada).

Spielberg, who has previously documented the horrors of the Holocaust in "Shindler's List" and World World II in the HBO series "Band of Brothers", hopes that his new project would break the silence on a subject that until now has been taboo.

In a statement to the Hollywood Reporter Spielberg said: "As an American Director who also happens to be Jewish, I can no longer stay silent about what the Israelis and the Zionist movement have been doing in the name of Judaism and with our tax money." He added "For years, the Hollywood community know to embrace progressive issues has been reluctant to tackle the issue of Palestine for fear of reprisal by what is perceived as a blind Jewish support to Israel in Hollywood. This needs to change; the sad history of the holocaust is being repeated again in Palestine at the hands of those who claim to do it in the name of Judaism. We should not remain silent".

The project is sure to create a huge controversy in an industry that has been known to shun any pro-Palestinian activities. Actress Vanessa Redgrave was all but blacklisted from the Hollywood system after speaking out in favor of Palestinian rights in the seventies.

A Dream Works spokesman declined to comment, saying he had not seen a copy of the project brief.

Marissa Nixon contributed to this report

Origins:   The spelling, grammatical, punctuation, and typographical errors in the purported Hollywood Reporter article quoted above give it away as an anti-Israel hoax, and the Hollywood Reporter itself explicitly disclaimed it in their April 16 issue:

Spielberg target of bogus report

Steven Spielberg was hit Monday by a false report circulating on the Internet claiming that he is
planning a DreamWorks feature film sympathetic to the Palestinian cause. The director's spokesman, Marvin Levy, called the report "an obvious, vicious hoax." The bogus news story was attributed to The Hollywood Reporter and carried the bylines of fictitious reporters. It was posted on several news lists and also forwarded to several Canadian-based news organizations as well as Jewish poltical-action groups and other activists. Under a headline that read "Spielberg to direct feature based on Palestinian Uprising," the false news story purported to quote Spielberg speaking out on behalf of the Palestinians and criticizing both Israel and Hollywood. The original source of the story, which circulated by e-mail, could not be determined.

Last updated:   3 December 2007


  Sources Sources:

    Kilday, Gregg.   "Spielberg Target of Bogus Report."

    The Hollywood Reporter.   16 April 2002.

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as snopes.com back in 1994.

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