Introduction: During the Gotham Awards in New York City, Robert De Niro, acclaimed actor and star of the Martin Scorsese-directed film “Killers of the Flower Moon,” claimed his speech was censored by the event organizers and Apple, the film’s distributor. CNN has sought comments from Apple and the Gotham Awards.
Speech Censorship Allegation: De Niro, appearing visibly agitated while presenting at the awards, revealed that the initial segment of his speech was omitted without his knowledge. He opted to read the original version from his phone, receiving applause from the audience.
De Niro’s Bold Remarks: In his uncensored remarks, De Niro tackled controversial topics, criticizing the distortion of historical facts and the spread of conspiracy theories. He referenced Florida’s contentious educational standards on Black history and made indirect references to former President Donald Trump’s administration, calling out the spread of lies and disrespect towards minority groups.
Controversial Topics Addressed: De Niro’s speech touched on sensitive subjects, including Trump’s derogatory use of ‘Pocahontas’ as a slur against Senator Elizabeth Warren and the misrepresentation of Native American history. He related these themes to his latest film, “Killers of the Flower Moon,” which delves into the exploitation of the Osage Nation in 1920s Oklahoma.
Confronting the Gotham Awards and Apple: Expressing his disapproval of the censorship, De Niro refrained from thanking the Gotham Awards and Apple, questioning their decision to edit his speech. This incident follows the recent discontinuation of Jon Stewart’s show on Apple TV+ due to disagreements over episode content, highlighting growing tensions around content control and censorship in the entertainment industry.
Robert De Niro’s experience at the Gotham Awards raises critical questions about freedom of expression in the entertainment sector, particularly concerning controversial historical and political topics. His assertive stance emphasizes the ongoing struggle for unfiltered speech in the public domain.