HBO recently announced their latest project, Confederate. An alternate timeline narrative about the Confederacy successfully seceding from the Union following the Civil War and transforming slavery into a modern institution in the south. Confederate will be helmed by David Benioff and D.B. Weiss the creators of the hit fantasy show Game of Thrones. The annoucement was immediately met with criticsm which forced the showrunners to address it in an interview with Vulture. However, that clearly wasn’t enough as the backlash continued. It was particularly concentrated last night as Twitter users made their feelings known on the upcoming slave drama.
The Twitter campaign led by April Reign took the social media platform by storm as #NoConfederate trended #1 in the United States and #2 worldwide. The trends held for a large portion of the hour-long live broadcast of Game of Thrones‘ third episode of the seventh season at 9PM ET on Sunday. We at Geeks of Color also took part in the campaign, if you are unaware of the show and/or why it drew so much criticism you can read our perspective on Confederate here.
As a result of the Twitter campaign, HBO responded with the following statement:
“We have great respect for the dialogue and concern being expressed around Confederate. We have faith that [writers] Nichelle, Dan, David and Malcolm will approach the subject with care and sensitivity. The project is currently in its infancy so we hope that people will reserve judgment until there is something to see.”
The statement doesn’t reveal a change of heart from HBO just yet. It acknowledges the campaign and states that they respect the concerns being expressed and vow to approach the subject with care and sensitivity.
Last week, HBO’s president of programming Casey Bloys defended the show saying:
“Everyone understands there is a high degree of getting this right. … If you can get it right, there is real opportunity to advance the racial discussion in America,” Bloys said. “If you can draw a line between what we’re seeing in the country today with voter suppression, mass incarceration, lack of access to public education and healthcare and draw the line to our past and shared history, that’s an important line to draw and a conversation worth having. [The producers] acknowledge this has a high degree of difficulty. It’s a risk worth taking.”
Source: The Hollywood Reporter, Featured Image via FilmMagic for HBO