Acclaimed filmmaker Steven Spielberg recently expressed concerns over the rise of antisemitism while discussing his Oscar-nominated film “The Fabelmans” on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.” According to Variety, an American media company, “The Fabelmans” is a semi-autobiographical movie based on Spielberg’s childhood in which Sammy Fabelman (Gabriel LaBelle) is the subject of antisemitic abuse by his school bullies.
After discussing the film, Colbert asked Spielberg if the rise of antisemitism in the United States and around the world had surprised him. “I find it very, very surprising… Antisemitism has always been there; it’s either been just around the corner, slightly out of sight, but always lurking, or it has been much more overt, like in Germany in the ’30s.” He added, “But not since Germany in the ’30s have I witnessed antisemitism no longer lurking but standing proud with hands on hips like Hitler and Mussolini, kind of daring us to defy it.” “I’ve never experienced this in my entire life, especially in this country.”
Spielberg, who also directed the Holocaust epic ‘Schindler’s List’ in 1994, continued by claiming that antisemitism is a component of a larger trend of hatred that he has noticed over the past few years. “Somehow, the marginalization of people that aren’t part of some kind of majority race is something that has been creeping up on us for years and years and years… Hate became a kind of membership to a club that has gotten more members than I ever thought was possible in America… And hate and antisemitism go hand in hand; you can’t separate one from the other,” he added.
Spielberg does, however, hold out some hope that people can change for the better; this is the message he wants to get across with the tale of ‘The Fabelmans’. “To quote Anne Frank, I think she’s right when she said that most people are good… and I think essentially at our core, there is goodness and there is empathy,” Spielberg said.