Oscar winner Russell Crowe underwent hours, and hours, of makeup work to “become” Roger Ailes.
Some days it took six full hours for the transformation to be complete.
The Fox News founder is the subject of Showtime’s upcoming miniseries “The Loudest Voice.” The production, to debut June 30 on Showtime, tracks how Ailes created the right-leaning news channel as well as allegations he sexually abused numerous female employees.
Ailes died in 2017.
So naturally Crowe is working the promotional circuit to stir up interest, and potentially ratings, for the miniseries. That led him to the far-left confines of CBS’s “The Late Show.”
Host Stephen Colbert couldn’t wait to attack Fox News during the interview. The miniseries itself likely does the same, above and beyond the factual record.
No matter. What’s fascinating about this exchange is what Crowe confesses to Colbert’s far-left audience and, more importantly, what Colbert doesn’t say in response.
Crowe explains that Ailes had a flair for being creative, and that he wanted to keep people watching no matter. what. That allowed Colbert to tweak Fox News for its packaging, adding the caveat “truth be damned.”
Crowe quickly steps in.
“Not, ‘truth be damned’ necessarily, but ‘truth has its place,'” “The Loudest Voice” star says with a twinkle.
Later, Crowe explained why Ailes created Fox News. The mogul peered out at the media landscape, and he noticed both a trend and a great opportunity.
“If he hadn’t seen a certain bias in media then Fox News could’ve been the exact opposite. Because he was looking for the open area of the market. It was in his estimation that CNN, that MSNBC, CNBC, CSPAN, ABC, NBC, CBS, the Times, the Post everyone had a left-leaning bent, so to him what was available was a conservative audience that was being underserved. And that proved to be very true because you now have one single news network that dominates half of the available audience.”
Crowe just confirmed to “The Late Show’s” audience, and the millions of liberal viewers at home, that the mainstream media is, indeed, biased. This isn’t Tucker Carlson blasting the biased press, or a Bill O’Reilly type.
It’s an A-list actor with no overt affection for the GOP.
Now, any conservative with two functioning brain cells knows media bias is alive and well. In the Age of Trump, few things are more obvious.
Condoleezza Rice shuts down NBC reporter Sheinelle Jones’ claim that race relations are worse under President Trump. https://t.co/b9MQ9r3OGW
— MRCTV.org (@mrctv) June 21, 2019
Still, most mainstream news outlets and their reporters still reject that reality.
Just ask CNN’s Jim Acosta.
Yet here’s Crowe telling it straight to their faces. Colbert’s response? Did he disagree? Interject with an opposing argument? Gently tell his guest he’s lost control of his faculties.
No. Instead, he offered up a quiet, almost whispered, reaction.
Then Colbert adds, “so [Ailes] won.”
You can almost hear the audience’s silence. Crowe shatters it.
“Well, he’s put Fox News into an incredible situation, hasn’t he?” Crowe says. “That is a money-making machine. They make $2 billion a year in profit. That’s a hell of a thing when you think that news services began with the understanding that you would offer news as part of your broadcast but you did it from the perspective of not needing or requiring a profit. The first network news were seen as a public service, and quite frankly I don’t know how we got away from that.”
It’s an interesting point. So, too, is how Fox News makes a killing by addressing the half of the country ignored by CBS, CNN and their ilk. It’s why the network, warts and all, continues to thrive.
Its success is also why prominent liberals boycott select hosts while others try to diminish the channel in any way they can.
Crowe made that task a bit tougher with his Colbert chat.