CBS Self-Censoring Reagan Miniseries

According to The War Over the Gipper, CBS executives are cutting out anything they think the Right might object to:

“Director Robert Allan Ackerman has opted out of the editing, and CBS executives are now cutting it themselves.

[. . .]

The script was vetted by two teams of lawyers, and producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan, who would not be interviewed by NEWSWEEK, have insisted that every fact (though not every line of dialogue) is supported by at least two sources. Before a New York Times story last month detailed conservatives’ complaints, network executives reportedly loved the movie. “They all thought it was brilliant,” says someone who worked on the film.

But the day the Times’s story broke—”The Reagans” crew calls it “Black Tuesday”—the movie instantly became trouble. CBS chairman Leslie Moonves, who approved both the script and a juicy eight-minute trailer, ordered the lawyers to look at the movie again, and asked for assurances that the facts were all in order. When he was told everything was fine, Moonves started editing anyway. “There are things we think go too far,” he told CNBC’s Tina Brown last week. (Moonves also declined to be interviewed by NEWSWEEK.) At that point, Ackerman removed himself from the editing in protest and the actors stopped talking. “Nobody seems to know what’s going on,” Ackerman told NEWSWEEK. “Whatever is going on is going on very secretly.

As of late last week, the film had been through at least three edits. The most incendiary line—where Nancy asks the president to do more for AIDS victims and he replies, “They that live in sin shall die in sin”—has been cut. “

Once you let yourself care what the Right is going to think about ANYTHING you do, it’s all over.