After Sony executives were exposed for making multiple racist comments in shocking leaked emails, RadarOnline.com has learned that one former studio honcho is now in the crosshairs for opposing LGBT causes too! According to a newly leaked correspondence, a Sony PR Chief worried the studio might “alienate” audiences by taking a stand for gay rights, and urged his co-workers to ignore pleas for equality.
In May 2014, the Human Rights Campaign published a letter calling on Sony to pull out of a planned event honoring Co-Chair Amy Pascal at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Brunei had just imposed Sharia law that violently punished same-sex activity with amputation and death, and the Sultan of the country owns the property. For the first time, the newly leaked emails expose the behind-the-scenes reaction to the equality crisis.
“This is very very serious,” Sony Pictures Entertainment Chairman Michael Lynton wrote in an e-mail exchange leaked in the massive hack attack on Sony’s computers. “What the owners are doing is truly horrific and we all should be taking a stand on this one.”
However, Sony’s PR chief Charles Sipkins warned in a May 2, 2014, e-mail to Pascal and Lynton that “if we cave, it’ll make bigger news.”
“If you or Michael or any of us personally want to yell and scream, that's great, but I just want you to be aware of the controversy and attention that will come with weighing into this battle today,” Sipkins wrote. “Not to mention we have a faith-based movie in theaters all over the country and we will alienate and lose an entirely different audience if we ratchet this up.”
The studio’s Heaven Is For Real — the story of a child’s near-death experience — was released just to weeks earlier.
Sipkins, who departed Sony last month, also worried that making a statement in support of the gay boycott would “oxygenate this story the week of Spider-Man or with Heaven is For Real out.”
But Pascal finally decided that the studio would support the human rights effort, despite the potential blow to their “faith-based” movies Sipkins cited.
“The recent declarations from the Sultan of Brunei, who owns the hotel, make it impossible to for us to want to have the event there,” he wrote. “… move the location to Sony.”
Sony ultimately moved the event to a Sony Studio lot in Culver City, California.
For more shocking revelations from the email leak, stay tuned to RadarOnline.com!