Steven Spielberg fears America is on the verge of another civil war.
While researching and making his new movie The Post, which tackles the drama surrounding the leak of the Pentagon Papers in 1971, the filmmaker was shocked by the parallels between Donald Trump’s America and that of impeached president Richard Nixon.
“I thought this was an idea that felt more like 2017 than 1971,” he tells The Hollywood Reporter. “I could not believe the similarities between today and what happened with the Nixon administration against their avowed enemies, The New York Times and The Washington Post. I realized this was the only year to make this film.”
And Spielberg admits the dynamic of America has changed in the year since Trump was voted U.S. leader: “We’ve lost the majority of good listeners… Our conversations have turned into skirmishes… At dinner table conversations outside of California, I’m completely mute or I get into these huge rows.
“The grey and the blue (the colors of the two sides that fought the American Civil War sides) have become the blue and the red (the colors of the Democrats and Republicans), and it is as vast a chasm as our nation faced before the Civil War. I’ve never seen anything like it.”
His The Post leading lady Meryl Streep agrees, adding, “We don’t know where north is. People disagree on what actual facts are. Whether this table is really a table.”
The Pentagon Papers exposed the United States’ political and military involvement in Vietnam from 1945 to 1967. They exposed the truth about the Vietnam War and suggested members of the Lyndon B. Johnson administration had systematically lied to the public and to politicians in the mid-to-late 1960s, before Nixon came to office in 1969.