Celebs Pull Out of New Yorker Festival Over Bannon Inclusion


Immediately, Twitter came alive. With director Judd Apatow, comedian John Mulaney, actor Jim Carrey, and musician Jack Antonoff all announcing they had withdrawn from their participation in the festival over Bannon's inclusion. Kathryn Schulz was among the New Yorker staff writers who tweeted that they had informed Remnick directly about their objections.

"For anyone who wonders what normalization of bigotry looks like, please look no further than Steve Bannon being invited by both @TheEconomist & @NewYorker to their respective events in #NYC a few weeks apart", Chelsea Clinton wrote in a tweet.

Meanwhile, Bannon is scheduled to appear September 15 at The Economist's "Open Future" festival in New York City. Longtime readers threatened to cancel their subscriptions. The consultant and media figure hasn't shied away from such accusations.

Several activists, filmmakers, writers and journalists condemned the New Yorker's invitation to Bannon, claiming the magazine was providing him with a platform to propagate white-nationalist views. As he noted, the New Yorker has a long history of interviewing people who've done vile things and hold vile positions, including George Wallace, Henry Kissinger, and Ayatollah Khomeini. (Which does not happen, of course, when we interview someone for an article or for the radio.) I don't want well-meaning readers and staff members to think that I've ignored their concerns. "But I would have thought that the point of a festival of ideas was to expose the audience to ideas".

Ben Stiller is not scheduled to be a part of the fest but wanted in on pulling out anyway, writing "I totally was available to fill in when everyone dropped out but would have so quickly said no f-ing way if they had asked, but now it's all moot, so never mind". "There is a better way to do this". "I will not take part in an event that normalizes hate". Lena Dunham's ex-boyfriend wouldn't have been able to stop it.

Remnick also outlined why Bannon was included in the first place. And I tend to agree.

'I'm out, ' Tonight Show host Fallon tweeted on Monday in response to a New York Times link to its story about Bannon's invitation.

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The New Yorker canceled an appearance by Steve Bannon at its October festival after a barrage of criticism online. Steve Bannon may be out of Trump's inner circle, but the ideology he subscribes to, as unsafe as it is, is on the assent, both in Trump's America and in Europe, where Bannon is busy spreading his brand of fear-mongering, xenophobia, and racist isolationism. And yet, how many of us on the left could even recognize his voice? We didn't read his website. Trump fired Yates after she refused to support his initial ban on travellers from seven Muslim countries, which was advocated by Bannon during his time as White House chief strategist. This might be an icky task, but it's also an important one, and as an experienced interviewer, David Remnick was up to it.

Remnick said he was planning for a "serious" conversation with Bannon.

"I love working for [the New Yorker] but I'm beyond appalled by this..." Would it be pleasant?

The numerous controversies surrounding Steve Bannon's media appearances, including on our own Four Corners, have little to do with free speech. I have already made that very clear to David Remnick.

Remnick said he had hoped to challenge Bannon's controversial ideas in the unique setting provided by the festival. He added, "I have the freedom to refuse to share a festival with him".

"I would like to invite you to sit down with me for an informal, free-ranging discussion of the political movements redefining global and local politics".