Denzel Washington tells it like it is. Though not a conservative by any stretch of the imagination, he lacks the arrogance, vapidity, and radical leftism peculiar to Hollywood personalities. Instead, he tends to speak the truth as he sees it in a reasonable, rational way that’s quite unlike what’s normally associated with Hollywood.
Such was the case back in 2016 when actors were patting themselves on the back and saying that making a movie was like going to a war zone…yes, really.
Well, Denzel demolished that lie during an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, saying “People say ‘the difficulty of making a movie.’ Well, send your son to Iraq. That’s difficult. It’s just a movie, relax. I don’t play that precious nonsense. Your son got shot in the face? That’s difficult. Making a movie is a luxury. It’s a gift. But don’t get it twisted, it’s just a movie.”
Denzel’s comments might have been a response to Tom Cruise, who had been somewhat misleadingly quoted in 2013 as saying that filming a movie was brutal like a tour of duty in Afghanistan.
The Hollywood Reporter was involved in that story too, reporting:
Don’t underestimate the work that Cruise does. As far as he’s concerned, acting is like competing in the Olympics, and sometimes like fighting in Afghanistan.
“I train, you know, I’ve studied, you know, professional athletes, Olympians, in order to, you know, a sprinter for the Olympics, they only have to run two races a day,” Cruise explains. “When I’m shooting, I could potentially have to run 30, 40 races a day, day after day.”
Cruise is later asked about his lawyer’s equating of his absence from Suri to that of a soldier’s absence from his family while fighting in Afghanistan. While the actor says he didn’t hear that comment, filming his last movie felt like being at war.
“I didn’t hear the Afghanistan [comment], but that’s what it feels like, and certainly on this last movie, it was brutal. It was brutal,” Cruise says.
TMZ had reported on the same quote about the filming being “brutal”, though it somewhat unfairly characterized Cruise as having said that filming the movie was like war. It later had to amend the article to reflect the fact that that wasn’t really the case, as Snopes reports, saying:
On 8 November 2013, the TMZ celebrity gossip site ran a story which characterized Cruise as describing his work as an actor as being “as hard as fighting in Afghanistan.” This bit of TMZ gossip was quickly picked up and widely disseminated, usually accompanied by declarations mocking Cruise for having the hubris to compare acting in films with the real-life sacrifices and hardship of actually serving in a combat zone.
[…]TMZ subsequently modified their article to include the following statement from Tom Cruise’s attorney, which branded TMZ’s characterization of Cruise’s words as a “distortion”:
Cruise’s lawyer, Bert Fields, says the notion that Tom compares his acting to fighting a war is a distortion, pointing to a section in the deposition — not part of the deposition that was publicly released — in which Tom is asked, “Do you believe the situations [being in a movie and fighting a war in Afghanistan] are the same?” Tom replies, “Oh, come on.” Fields says that clearly means “of course not.”
Watch him here: