Part of the answer is found in what Iggy Pop had in common with Pat Buckley, his sometime dinner-party hostess in Gstaad: fashion. Weinstein is out of fashion. Weinstein may have been a fearsome figure in Hollywood, but he also has long been a figure of fun. Tom Cruise gave the second-best performance of his storied dancing career as the Weinstein-inspired Les Grossman in the closing credits of Tropic Thunder. It was not a loving parody. It’s been a long time since Polanski’s was a name to conjure with, and his épater la bourgeoisie sexual-outlaw shtick is out of fashion in a Hollywood that as a matter of social norms might be characterized the way Gilbert Osmond described himself in Portrait of a Lady: not conventional, but convention itself. The soi-disant radicals of Hollywood Anno Domini 2018 remind me of the ladies in “Nasty Woman” t-shirts I see shopping at my local Whole Foods, checking out the $59.99/pound wild-caught river salmon while Linda Perry of 4 Non Blondes is on the gently modulated in-store sound system singing: “I pray every single day for a revolution,” as if the Hollywood multimillionaire who went on to produce Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful” and Pink’s “Get the Party Started”—and the crowd at Whole Foods—wouldn’t be the first one up against the wall come the revolution. I’ve got some bad news for you, Sunshine: You aren’t fighting the Establishment. You are the Establishment.
One could spend a few entertaining hours listing the beloved celebrities who would be shunned by polite society—here meaning polite Hollywood society and polite leftish society more generally—if they were trying to get started today. Eddie Murphy’s Delirious made him a superstar, and it made HBO a ton of money. Anybody want to talk about how many times the word “faggot” is used in that act or about how the entire first section is one long rant about buggery and AIDS? Anybody want to revisit the personal life of Errol Flynn? And consider the question of which big publisher would bring out Philip Roth’s first few novels today without trigger warnings—and without subsequently firing whomever acquired them in the first place. The original opening number from Disney’s Aladdin is practically samizdat today, and poor old Howard Ashman would be un-personed if he had penned those purportedly anti-Arab lyrics in 2018.