‘The Americans’ Showrunner Slams WGA Silence on Hamas’ Attack on Israel: ‘Failed Us Deeply’

“For an organization that constantly puts out statements to make sure that it’s on the right side of history, it has sadly issued its statements through its silence,” Joel Fields said.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – JUNE 05: Joel Fields attends FX Network's "Pose" season 2 premiere on June 05, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)

“The Americans” showrunner Joel Fields slammed the Writers’ Guild of America for its failure to condemn Hamas’ attack on Israel.

“The Writers Guild has failed us deeply,” he said Wednesday during a panel at Variety’s Hollywood & Antisemitism Summit. “For an organization that constantly puts out statements to make sure that it’s on the right side of history, it has sadly issued its statements through its silence.”

The latest criticism of the WGA’s response to Israel follows an open letter signed by a group of screenwriters, which included Fields, Eli Roth, Graham Yost, Amy Chozick, Jerry Seinfeld, Steven Levitan, Scott Frank, Amy Sherman-Palladino, among others.

“When it comes to taking a stand, the Writers Guild of America has always led by example. When employers sought to exploit our work, the Guild bravely spoke up. When the BLM movement took flight, the Guild rightfully spoke up. When the #MeToo reckoning came and Hollywood needed to change, again the Guild spoke up,” the letter stated. “But when terrorists invaded Israel to murder, rape, and kidnap Jews… the Guild stayed silent.”

“The conflict between Israel and the Palestinian people is complex and full of nuance, but the crimes committed on October 7th were simple and cruel,” the group continued. “If we cannot stand up to call it what it is — a monstrous act of barbarity — then we have lost the plot.”

A WGA spokesperson did not immediately return TheWrap’s request for comment.

While the WGA has not weighed in on the conflict, SAG-AFTRA and the Directors’ Guild of America have both issued statements, along with major studios including Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery, Paramount Global, Comcast/NBCUniversal and Lionsgate and Hollywood agencies including William Morris Endeavor, Creative Artists Agency and United Talent Agency.

The actors’ union said it “deplores and condemns the horrific acts of aggression against the Israeli people on Oct. 7.”

“The attack was a fundamental violation of human rights and dignity,” the statement read. “There is no justification for the murder and kidnapping of civilians. We mourn the loss of life and urge the safe return of those who are missing and held hostage. We stand united against hatred and violence and pray for peace.”

Meanwhile, the DGA said it “unequivocally condemns terrorism and joins the many voices in our community decrying the recent Hamas terrorist attacks in Israel and violence against innocent civilians.”

“We stand against the growing spread of antisemitism here in the US and abroad, and remain committed in our actions, words and deeds to supporting the Jewish people,” the directors added.

Since the war began on Oct. 7, 3,785 Palestinians have been killed and more than 12,500 others have been wounded, according to the Associated Press, citing the Gaza Health Ministry.

Meanwhile, AP noted that more than 1,400 people in Israel have been killed.

In addition to statements, Disney and Comcast each donated $2 million to humanitarian groups in Israel to help support those impacted by the conflict, while Skydance and Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively each pledged $1 million.


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