Everything Rush Has Said on “The Passion of the Christ”…<a href=”/home/menu/thepassion/passion.guest.html”>photos, audio, transcripts></a>
RUSH: See, this is the thing. There is a furor. You’re just not hearing about it because it’s not being reported in the mainstream press. If you don’t think there’s a furor, you don’t know the kind of reaction CBS is getting. CBS is being inundated with e-mails and phone calls in record numbers. Nothing CBS is outdoing the Janet Jackson business by proportion, in terms of audience size. You’re just not hearing about it because the mainstream press isn’t reporting it but this is the same old thing. It’s just like Hollywood doesn’t think there’s a whole lot of Christians out there to make up the audience. Lo and behold, here’s Andy Rooney. CBS is finding out just how many people were offended by this.
CALLER: Where are you hearing that, through the grapevine or what?
RUSH: I’m a, you know, powerful, influential member of the media. I hear these things.
CALLER: (laughter) Okay.
RUSH: These people are being — I mean, Black Rock — is being inundated and it started Sunday night. It started with what he did in his commentary.
CALLER: Yeah. In fact he said, “Well, I wonder how many millions Mel Gibson is going to make off the death of Jesus?” And I thought a good response would be to say, “Well, hopefully as many millions as Michael Moore made off of the death of the kids at Columbine.”
RUSH: Yeah, somebody else said… That’s good. Somebody else said, “Why didn’t anybody criticize Spielberg for profiting on the Holocaust?”
CALLER: Yeah, exactly. All the liberal icons. Also they’re going to say, “Well, on the one hand they say this movie is going to bomb. It’s a religious movie, not even in English. It’s subtitled,” and yet now that it’s doing well I think they’re going to hear, “Well, of course it’s doing well. It’s all the advanced publicity. This movie got millions of dollars of free publicity.” But you said earlier, “Well, what about the Last Temptation of Christ? That movie also got tons of advanced publicity.”
RUSH: Look, they can try to rationalize this away all they want, but they’re going to know they’re lying to themselves. You’re just going to have to have faith in that. They’re all lying, the people that try that. Understand one thing. What I think now; I could be dead wrong. I know ideology counts for a whole lot in Hollywood, but so does dollars, and it’s a tight race. It’s tight. Ideology wins a lot. These people will damage themselves, but at the same time they’re going to see the dollars here, and Mel will be okay. But he won’t need ’em anymore.
He won’t need ’em anymore. He will be able to bankroll his own movies. He’s going to have a cache now — I like that Hollywood term, “cache” — as a director, and, you know, it’s Larry King’s #1 question to any guest? “What’s next for you? Do you want to direct?” That’s the question that launched Larry in Hollywood, asking every actor if they want to direct because that’s what they all want to do. That’s what they all want to answer. He puts it out on the table for them.
As to Andy Rooney, I think somewhere — this is an e-mail I got. I really don’t know if this is true. I said the other day that I thought he was Catholic. Irish Catholic. Turns out I’ve gotten a number of e-mails, “No, he’s an atheist,” and reading what he said about this and about God and afterlife and all this, I think he is an atheist. I think that’s what’s behind his belief here. I’ve always thought atheists are probably cloaked in fear.