Ryan Kavanaugh film producer and CEO of Relativity has been an exception to the unwritten rule among Hollywood producers, who have been subdued or silent in their comments about the conflict in Gaza, while actors and actresses, in some cases, have been strongly critical of Israel. In response to the letter by Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem calling Israeli actions in Gaza, “genocide, ” Kavanaugh responded passionately:
“It makes my blood boil, ” he told the Hollywood Reporter. “As the grandson of Holocaust survivors, anyone calling it Israeli genocide rather than protecting themselves are either the most ignorant people about the situation and shouldn’t be commenting or are truly anti-Semitic.”
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And with Kavanaugh, it isn’t just about outspoken rhetoric. He has donated $25, 000 each to the Anti-Defamation League, America’s Voices in Israel, Friends of the Israel Defense Forces and Hadassah. The connection between being Pro-Israel and his role in Hollywood; simple, he says the film industry needs open minded audiences, and they are not likely to find them among Hamas. “Why in a community that celebrates the human spirit…do some people side with Hamas in its war against Israel? Israel is perhaps the closest free-thinking place to Hollywood.”