Airplane! Director Slams Cancel Culture, Says His Movie Couldn’t Be Made Today

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American film director, producer, and screenwriter David Zucker has hit out against cancel culture, saying that it is ruining comedy and making studios do ridiculous things like putting trigger warnings on classic movies.

Zucker who is associated with parody comedies like the Naked Gun, was the director and writer of the iconic 1980 film Airplane!

In an essay for Commentary magazine he acknowledges that he would struggle to get the film made today because studio executives would be scared of a backlash over controversial jokes.

Asked “Could you make ‘Airplane!’ today?” he replies: “Of course, we could. Just without the jokes.”

Breitbart reports: David Zucker revealed that Paramount Pictures had second thoughts about re-releasing Airplane! for its 40th anniversary last year over concerns that the movie would offend some people. Paramount actually “discussed withholding the re-release over feared backlash for scenes that today would be deemed ‘insensitive,’” Zucker wrote.

The scenes in question include the “jive” scene, in which Leave It to Beaver actress Barbara Billingsley, who is white, translates for two black characters who speak “jive.”

“I’ve lost count of the number of people who have said to me, ‘You couldn’t do that scene today,’” Zucker added.

Watch below:

While Zucker doesn’t mention “cancel culture” by name in the essay, he refers to the cultural veto power that “9 percent” of the population wields.

“There is a very vocal, though I believe small, percentage of the population that can’t differentiate between Glue Sniffing Joke and Glue Sniffing Drug Problem,” he wrote.

“It is these people whom studio executives fear when they think twice about rereleasing Airplane! on its 40th anniversary, when they put disclaimers in front of Blazing Saddles, or when they pressure writers to remove jokes that are otherwise perfectly offensive.”

HBO Max has put a trigger warning before Blazing Saddles, cautioning audiences that the movie features “racist language and attitudes.”

Zucker argued that such a mindset isn’t conducive to creativity.

Niamh Harris
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