Two major corporate sponsors have pulled their support for a New York City production of Julius Caesar. At issue: The titular role has an unmistakably Trumpian air. And, um, spoiler alert: He gets assassinated.
The Julius Caesar in the The Public Theater’s production “has blond hair, a fondness for long ties and a fashionable wife who speaks with a Slavic accent,” as NPR’s Jeff Lunden reports. Conspirators stab him to death onstage, making for some Kathy Griffin-like gore.
In the funeral scene, according to The New York Times‘ review, “Marc Antony exposes not just Caesar’s sliced-up garment, as Shakespeare indicates, but also his bare, wound-ripped flesh.”
Delta and Bank of America both pulled their sponsorship over the production, which has been the target of criticism in recent days from right-leaning outlets such as Breitbart and Fox News as well as from President Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr.
“No matter what your political stance may be, the graphic staging of Julius Caesar at this summer’s Free Shakespeare in the Park does not reflect Delta Air Lines’ values,” Delta said in a statement to Deadline Hollywood.
“Their artistic and creative direction crossed the line on the standards of good taste. We have notified them of our decision to end our sponsorship as the official airline of The Public Theater effective immediately.”
Bank of America also terminated support for the production, though it will continue its relationship with the theater. “The Public Theater chose to present Julius Caesar in a way that was intended to provoke and offend,” the bank said in a statement to Deadline. “Had this intention been made known to us, we would have decided not to sponsor it.”
The Times review says the play “takes onstage Trump-trolling to a startling new level.”
On Sunday, Donald Trump Jr. tweeted a link to a Fox News story that described the production this way: “A New York City…
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