Published: Wed, September 05, 2018
Entertaiment | By Minnie Bishop

New Yorker Cuts Steve Bannon From Festival Program After Outcry

New Yorker Cuts Steve Bannon From Festival Program After Outcry

Facing widespread outrage, The New Yorker has dropped plans to interview Steve Bannon during its festival next month.

Patton Owalt also dropped out and suggested that the New Yorker replace him with right-wing troll Milo Yiannopoulos.

"I have every intention of asking him hard questions and engaging in a serious and even combative conversation", Remnick told The New York Times.

The magazine announced the decision to disinvite Mr. Bannon from its New Yorker Festival Monday evening, just hours after the list of guests was published online.

The magazine's Editor-in-Chief Zanny Minton Beddoes released a statement Tuesday explaining why she and the magazine invited Bannon to be interviewed at the festival. I'm not so mad about it that I would ever cancel my subscription, but, as Malcolm Gladwell, one of the few New Yorker contributors to stand up for Bannon's invitation, said, "Call me old fashioned". But this isn't James Baldwin vs William F Buckley. "But I would have thought that the point of a festival of ideas was to expose the audience to ideas".

'I've changed my mind.

News of Bannon's inclusion was met with wide-spread criticism. Bridget Everett tweeted that she's out if Bannon is in, Jimmy Fallon simply wrote "I'm Out", and Mike Birbiglia and Bo Burnham also let it be known that they would not participate.

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Mulaney likewise threatened to walk, noting that while he appreciates a serious debate, Bannon's discourse is more akin to "PT Barnum level horses**t".

Apatow, director of such hit comedies as "Trainwreck" and "Bridesmaids", declared he "will not take part in an event that normalizes hate". "Could never happen", said Carrey.

On its own, the New Yorker's blunder - for it certainly is that - may not matter much.

Since leaving the White House a year ago, Bannon has continued to champion right-wing causes, including supporting British anti-Islam activist Tommy Robinson, who was freed from prison last month after winning a legal challenge over contempt charges.

In the end, though, Remnick said the outcry led him to conclude there were better ways to engage with Bannon - who would have been paid an honorarium and other fees for taking part in the festival.

He went on to add that "if the opportunity presents itself I'll interview him in a more traditionally journalistic setting as we first discussed, and not on stage".

Bannon - who left the White House in August 2017 in the wake of a deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia - blasted the magazine over its "gutless" decision to remove him from the lineup.

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