Producer Effie Brown: "People Didn't Want to Work With Me" After Calling Out Matt Damon

Jun 18, 2020 13:56

The Gamechanger Films CEO reflects on the backlash she received in 2015 after arguing on-air with Matt Damon: "I spoke up and got summarily smacked back down."
- The Hollywood Reporter (@THR) June 18, 2020

In a guest column for the Hollywood Reporter, producer Effie Brown opens up about the backlash she received after calling out Matt Damon for the lack of diversity on the HBO series, Project Greenlight.

“After I did Project Greenlight - and this is no secret - I suffered a huge backlash. I didn’t work for a while. People didn’t want to work with me because I spoke truth to power. People who speak up are usually marginalized and pushed back, called difficult, confrontational, you name it. I spoke up and got summarily smacked back down. I did not get embraced with open arms, nor did it work in my favor … at first.”

Brown also said that she only got paid to make the movie but not for her work on the series. She has not seen any residuals from the show. Brown feels that they used her for her experiences and treated her as if she was secondary.

Brown said that Lee Daniels reached out to her and asked her how she was doing. Daniels offered her a job with his company but Lee had to fight to bring her on. The studio involved with Lee didn’t want him to hire her but Lee fought back.

Brown said that she’s thankful to Lee, her other allies, and Black Twitter for “having my back 1000%.”

Brown said that it took five years and she’s been able to bounce back. She’s the CEO/Co-Owner of Gamechanger Films and in a position “to help leverage the same access for all underrepresented groups - women, people of color, those with disabilities, LGBTQ, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian artists.”

Brown said that she’s also the new chair of the Inclusion Advisory committee for the new Academy Museum.

Brown said that she’s grateful for where she is at today and is thankful again to her allies, Lee Daniels, and Black Twitter. Brown ends the pieces advising others in her position to hire, mentor, and promote underrepresented groups and invest in minority companies.


television - hbo, matt damon, black celebrities, ben affleck, sexism, interview, race / racism