The Oscar winner has attacked one of Wall Street’s most famous hedge fund managers for criticizing Hollywood studios while failing to actually understand the film industry itself.
“(Loeb) calls himself an activist investor, and I would call him a carpetbagger, and one who is trying to spread a climate of fear that pushes studios to want to make only tent poles (big blockbuster movies),” the 52-year-old actor, director and producer told Deadline.com.
The Third Point LLC chief executive recently slammed Sony Entertainment, saying summer films like After Earth and White House Down “bombed spectacularly”; Third Point currently controls seven percent of Sony’s stock.
Clooney is currently in post-production for his latest effort, The Monuments Men, which Sony will release on Dec. 18.
His affiliation with the studio caused him to vocalize his less than tepid feelings about Loeb’s involvement in Hollywood.
“I’ve been reading a lot about Daniel Loeb, a hedge fund guy who describes himself as an activist but who knows nothing about our business, and he is looking to take scalps at Sony because two movies in a row underperformed?” Clooney wondered, adding, “How any hedge fund guy can call for responsibility is beyond me, because if you look at those guys, there is no conscience at work. It is a business that is only about creating wealth, where when they fail, they get bailed out and where nobody gets fired…A guy from a hedge fund entity is the single least qualified person to be making these kinds of judgments, and he is dangerous to our industry.”
He concluded: “[Loeb] calls himself an activist investor, and I would call him a carpet bagger, and one who is trying to spread a climate of fear that pushes studios to want to make only tent poles.”
“What he’s doing is scaring studios and pushing them to make decisions from a place of fear. Why is he buying stock like crazy if he’s so down on things? He’s trying to manipulate the market.”
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