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Clint Eastwood will film his new movie, “The Ballad of Richard Jewell,” in Georgia despite many Hollywood celebrities calling for a boycott of the state due to its controversial “heartbeat” abortion bill.
The bill, which was signed by Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, prohibits abortions in the state after a heartbeat is detected, which can be as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. Celebrities such as Jameela Jamill, Busy Philipps, Tiffany Haddish, Alyssa Milano and Milla Jovovich have spoken out about the bill and more than 50 others called for studios to boycott filming in the state until the ban is lifted.
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According to WJCL, Eastwood is moving forward with production on his latest movie in Georgia, clearly ignoring the calls for a boycott. It wouldn’t make much sense to film anywhere else as the often right-leaning director and actor will helm a story that’s very specific to the city of Atlanta. “The Ballad of Richard Jewell” is based on a real-life incident that took place during the 1996 Olympics there.
Richard Jewell smiles during a press conference 28 October in Atlanta, Ga. Jewell was cleared as a suspect in the July 27 bombing of Centennial Olympic Park, three months after the FBI announced that he was their prime suspect. (Photo credit should read DOUG COLLIER/AFP/Getty Images)
Security guard Richard Jewell discovered a pipe bomb in a knapsack at a park near the Olympic grounds. Although he reportedly helped clear bystanders out of harm’s way, he was later named as the primary suspect in the case. Jewell endured countless media outlets naming him a lone bomber and terrorist after being named a suspect, only to be cleared of all charges three months later.
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Eric Robert Rudolph pleaded guilty to the bombing in 2005. Jewell eventually sued media outlets for dragging his name through the mud and won. Variety reports Kathy Bates, Olivia Wilde, Jon Hamm, and Sam Rockwell have all signed on for roles in the upcoming movie, which is expected to begin filming in Georgia soon.
While Eastwood and his handful of stars are not observing the Georgia boycott, many big studios that film there such as Netflix, Disney and AMC have publicly spoken about the possibility of moving their work out of the state due to its passing of the “heartbeat” bill.
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“We have many women working on productions in Georgia, whose rights, along with millions of others, will be severely restricted by this law,” Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos previously said. “Given the legislation has not yet been implemented, we’ll continue to film there, while also supporting partners and artists who choose not to. Should it ever come into effect, we’d rethink our entire investment in Georgia.”
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