“As an employer, this is beyond politics,” Simon wrote. “I’m turning in scripts next month on an HBO non-fiction miniseries based on events in Texas, but I can’t and won’t ask female cast/crew to forgo civil liberties to film there. What else looks like Dallas/Ft. Worth?”
The Dallas Film & Creative Industries Office replied to Simon’s announcement, writing on Twitter, “Laws of a state are not reflective of its entire population. Not bringing a production to Dallas (a big ‘D’) only serves to further disenfranchise those that live here. We need talent/crew/creatives to stay & vote, not get driven out by inability to make a living.”
Simon replied to the tweet, writing that the organization misunderstood why he made the choice he did.
“You misunderstand completely. My response is NOT rooted in any debate about political efficacy or the utility of any boycott. My singular responsibility is to securing and maintaining the civil liberties of all those we employ during the course of a production … if even one of our employees requires full control of her own body and choices — and if a law denies this or further criminalizes our attempt to help her exercise that control, we should have filmed elsewhere.”
Simon’s upcoming project has not yet been announced.
The Texas law bans abortions after six weeks and allows any person — though, not government officials — to bring a civil lawsuit in state court against a provider accused of violating the ban.