DIXIE-CRATS The Chicks Harvey Weinstein really ought to send NBC CEO Jeff Zucker a fruit basket. Just in time for the opening of Shut Up and Sing, a new documentary about the Dixie Chicks, NBC has handed the Weinstein Co. a controversy tailor-made to grab headlines.
The Drudge Report broke the news late last night that the network had rejected a commercial for the film on grounds that it disparages President George W. Bush. The spot shows singer Natalie Maines calling Bush "dumb," and features her famous utterance that the group is "ashamed the President of the United States is from Texas."
Now, People For the American Way has dived into the fray, condemning NBC for censorship. The liberal group (whose New York director, Andrew Stengel, worked for Weinstein at Miramax Films) has issued a call for its members to contact the network and demand that the commercial be aired. PFAW also claims to be weighing whether to join the Weinstein Co. in a legal action against NBC. And, as Harvey Weinstein knows, you just can't buy that kind of publicity.