North Korea: 'The Interview' Smugglers Taking on Hollywood Feminists Gloria Steinem, Abigail Disney
Steinem and producer Disney will march into the nation for a peace conference May 24, but the Human Rights Foundation is urging them to do more research: "They're behaving as the chumps of Kim Jong Un."
A version of this story first appeared in the May 22 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
On May 24, Gloria Steinem and producer Abigail Disney will march across the DMZ and hold a peace conference in North Korea capital Pyongyang. Endorsed by dictator Kim Jong Un, the group, which includes documentary filmmakers Gay Dillingham, Jodie Evans and others, is being criticized by the Human Rights Foundation, which recently dropped 10,000 DVDs of shortened versions of The Interview from balloons into the repressive country.
HRF founder Thor Halvorssen says the marchers haven't done their research and are therefore playing the role of useful idiots. "How many female defectors have they spoken to? None," says Halvorssen.
Steinem and Disney declined to comment, but the group's website says the purpose of the march is to "share our experiences and ideas of mobilizing women to bring an end to violent conflict."
Halvorssen, though, says the women are being duped by organizer Christine Ahn, an activist who often blames the U.S. for North Korea's ills and rarely mentions the prison camps and documented cases of torture perpetrated by the Kim regime. Ahn also declined to comment.
"How can Steinem and Disney participate given the rapes, forced abortions and sex trafficking?" Halvorssen asks. "Kim Jong Un is right now putting his pleasure group of concubines together. Do they even know that?"
Halvorssen called on the 30 marchers to cancel. "It's hypocritical feminists and Hollywood poseurs. They're behaving as chumps of Kim Jong Un."