Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, at least publicly, does not appear fazed by the notion of a Hollywood boycott of the state after the passage of a highly restrictive abortion law.
Kemp over the weekend dismissed boycott rumblings as a “squawk” from “C-list celebrities” upset that Georgia and several other states have passed abortion restrictions in a collective challenge to Roe v. Wade.
“He doesn’t seem to understand that men are a part of Impregnation. Somehow everything is always women’s responsibility,” Patricia Arquette tweeted.
Among the other Hollywood names speaking out against the law are Jameela Jamil, Natalie Portman, Judd Apatow, Ben Stiller and Sean Penn. Jason Bateman, whose Netflix series, Ozark, is filmed in the state, said he would not return if the bill survives court challenges and becomes law. Ron Howard, director of the shooting-in-Georgia Hillbilly Elegy, has expressed more of a wait-and-see view, saying he would not return to the state after wrapping.
Kemp delivered his comments over the weekend at Georgia’s Republican convention. “I understand that some folks don’t like this new law. I’m fine with that,” he said, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “We’re elected to do what’s right – and standing up for precious life is always the right thing to do.”
Kemp added: “We are the party of freedom and opportunity. We value and protect innocent life — even though that makes C-list celebrities squawk.”
The consequences are not insignificant. In fiscal 2018, the state of Georgia said it handed out more tax credits than any other state or nation aside from the UK. There were 455 film and TV projects in the state, generating some $2.7 billion in direct spending in the area, according to state officials.