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Disney CEO Signals Withdrawal From Georgia Over Abortion Ban

Bob Iger attends the World Premiere of Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures 'Avengers: Endgame' at Los Angeles Convention Center on April 22, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.
Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

On Wednesday, CEO of the Walt Disney Co. Bob Iger signaled a pull-out in Georgia over the state’s new “heartbeat” legislation, which bans abortion after unborn babies’ heartbeats are detected (around six-weeks gestation).

 

“I rather doubt we will,” Iger told Reuters when asked about future production in Georgia.

Disney’s Marvel Studios recently shot scenes for both “Black Panther” and “Avengers: End Game” in the state.

“I think many people who work for us will not want to work there, and we will have to heed their wishes in that regard. Right now we are watching it very carefully,” the CEO continued.

“I don’t see how it’s practical for us to continue to shoot there” if the law goes into effect, Iger added.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican, signed the pro-life bill into law on May 7, ignoring threats of a Hollywood boycott spearheaded by actress Alyssa Milano. In March, some 50 actors signed onto a letter penned by the abortion activist to Georgia House Speaker David Ralston and the governor threatening a boycott. Georgia has become a magnet for Hollywood projects in large part due to the state’s 30% tax rebate for film and TV production.

Undeterred, Kemp praised the legislation as “a declaration that all life has value, that all life matters, and that all life is worthy of protection.”

 

“I realize that some may challenge it in a court of law. But our job is to do what is right, not what is easy. We are called to be strong and courageous, and we will not back down. We will always continue to fight for life,” the Republican stated.

Earlier this week, Netflix said the company would "rethink" filming in Georgia if the law goes into effect.

“We have many women working on productions in Georgia, whose rights, along with millions of others, will be severely restricted by this law," Netflix’s chief content creator Ted Sarandos told Variety. "It’s why we will work with the ACLU and others to fight it in court."

"Should it ever come into effect, we’d rethink our entire investment in Georgia," vowed Sarandos.

 

As highlighted by The Daily Wire on Wednesday, conservatives responded to the news by threatening a boycott of their own: against Netflix. Fox News contributor Guy Benson, for example, said he “would rethink Netflix subscription if abortion advocacy stands.” Editor-at-Large of RedState Kira Davis similarly stated: “I enjoy [Netflix] but there’s literally nothing on there I can’t live without. I’m totally happy to 'rethink' my investment as well. It’s a two way street, friends!”

Reed Morano's Amazon series “The Power” and a new comedy from actress Kristen Wiig will have their productions relocated out of Georgia, too, according to The Hollywood Reporter, noting, “Producers including David Simon, Christine Vachon, Mark Duplass, Neal Dodson and Nina Jacobson and Brad Simpson have also said they will steer clear of the state for future productions.”

Despite threats of boycott from liberal cities and Hollywood elites, pro-life legislation is sweeping the country. This year, eight states have passed pro-life laws; earlier this month, Alabama signed into law the strictest abortion ban in the union, teeing up a possible battle over Roe v. Wade.

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