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Spielberg Boycotts Olympic Role


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Spielberg boycotts Olympic role

US film director Steven Spielberg has withdrawn as an artistic adviser to the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

Tuesday, 12 February 2008, 22:45 GMT

In a statement, he accused China of not doing enough to pressure its ally Sudan to end the "continuing human suffering" in the troubled western Darfur region.

"I find that my conscience will not allow me to continue business as usual," said Mr Spielberg.

At least 200,000 people have been killed and two million forced from their homes in the five-year conflict.

In a statement, Mr Spielberg said: "At this point, my time and energy must be spent not on Olympic ceremonies, but on doing all I can to help bring an end to the unspeakable crimes against humanity that continue to be committed in Darfur."

He said: "Sudan's government bears the bulk of the responsibility for these on-going crimes but the international community, and particularly China, should be doing more...

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It's not like he's a Ric Birch or a David Atkins in terms of live stadium-spectacle credentials. It looks like he was just brought on for prestige -- but I doubt that, as a 'consultant,' he was really a crucial part in the operation. It will still be spectacular w/ or w/o this spoiled, over-rated Hollywood prima donna.

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I'm still disappointed that Speilberg isn't going to Beijing. I wish he changes his mind. I really wanted him to come to Beijing.

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Beijing will be a success, Spielberg or no Spielberg, there's no doubt about that. Whatever you think of his films, it was a brave decision by him and one I won't criticise him for. Maybe the only thing he can be criticised for is his naive belief that his influence may somehow have changed things for the better; you can accuse him of egotism certainly, but I doubt anyone here seriously disagrees with his reasons for stepping down. They are perfectly valid.

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