Latest victim of NY gun control law: Hollywood
posted at 10:05 am on May 2, 2013 by Ed Morrissey
This has irony written all over it. The gun-control law passed in haste and incompetence by the New York legislature at the demand of Governor Andrew Cuomo may mean a lot less business from the entertainment industry (via Elizabeth Crum on Twitter):
Officials in the movie and television industry say the new laws could prevent them from using the lifelike assault weapons and high-capacity magazines that they have employed in shows like “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” and films like “The Dark Knight Rises.”
Twenty-seven film and television projects, including programs like “Blue Bloods” and “Person of Interest,” are now in production in New York State using assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, according to the Motion Picture Association of America. Industry workers say that they need to use real weapons for verisimilitude, that it would be impractical to try to manufacture fake weapons that could fire blanks, and that the entertainment industry should not be penalized accidentally by a law intended as a response to mass shootings.
“Weapons are part of our history as a culture as humans,” said Ryder Washburn, vice president of the Specialists Ltd., a leading supplier of firearms for productions that is based in Manhattan. “To tell stories, you need them.”
Mr. Cuomo has gone out of his way to promote the industry’s success; on Monday, he issued one news release to say the state was on track to break its record for the number of television pilots shot in a year, and another to say that “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” would begin production this week in Rochester. The governor has also enjoyed political support from Hollywood: his sole out-of-state fund-raiser as governor was held at the Los Angeles home of an HBO executive.
Industry officials, though, say the state’s hastily developed gun control measures pose an unexpected challenge to their growing production business in New York — the possibility that fake police officers on television could be treated as real-life criminals. “Without clarification that the use of prop guns is still permitted on sets, many of the dozens of productions currently shooting in New York could be forced to go elsewhere,” said Vans Stevenson, the senior vice president for state government affairs at the motion picture group, which is the powerful trade association of the movie business.
Hey, self-defense is also part of our inalienable rights as humans, too. That didn’t hold much water with New York politicians looking to do something.