Hollywood anti-gun culture
Josh Wayner for TTAG
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I never get very political here at TTAG. I like to irk people once in a while, but the furthest I usually go is talking about hunting laws and ethics.

Today, however, I’m going to jump down the rabbit hole and talk about the Hollywood establishment’s inability to abstain from shooting itself in the foot when it comes to gun rights. No pun intended.

Hollywood is the manufacturer of much of our gun culture, and they have it in their power to make certain types of guns cool, but they don’t.

The “logic” of Hollywood’s hypocritical left-wing elite is an embarrassment. Or should be. It’s no secret that many of the entertainment industry have armed security, own guns themselves, and make a lot of money from depictions of guns in the context of on-screen violence.

Yet, for all that, they are also often rabidly anti-gun rights. Guns for me and not for thee is the general attitude. What that says to the average American — who’s not nearly as stupid as Hollywood thinks they are — is that they see themselves as worth far more than the rest of us plebs.

My life is much more valuable than yours, so stop causing violence by carrying a pistol. What are you, a vigilante wannabe? Shut up and buy tickets to my next film where I will kill a minimum of 50 people, blow up a building and derail a train. It’s a romantic comedy.

We’ve seen this a million times and it’s not worth it to go into the hypocrisy of it all. Instead let’s look at a different irony: the fact that most film and television is decidedly pro-gun and pro-civilian armament to the point that most of the stories wouldn’t even work if the characters weren’t constantly armed or lacked access to weapons.

In short, Hollywood makes guns cool, even if they aren’t always exactly guns.

There are a few franchises that are extremely popular that essentially hinge upon unlimited access to personally-owned weapons, among them Harry Potter and Star Wars, which are, of course the property of, well, anti-gun entities.

Harry Potter is a good, engaging story for the most part. It’s gospel to many anti-gun Millennial atheists, which are the majority fanbase of the series today.

The main issue with it is that everyone in every movie — from small children to professors and members of government (the Ministry) are armed with deadly weapons 100% of the time.

It’s demonstrated throughout the series that you can do pretty much anything you want with a wand, including injuring bystanders, inflicting massive amounts of damage to property and torturing and killing people.

To Hollywood, all of these are magical items of great power. The issue is, Hollywood treats magic wands like guns…and the other way around.

While it may seem like fun and games, the final act of the original series saw an entire army of bad wizards attacking a school full of armed students. They weren’t just laughing and playing around, waving sticks, either.

Dozens of children and adults were killed on-screen, but it demonstrated an effective armed resistance nevertheless. It appears that, at least in my limited knowledge of the Potter universe, that carrying weapons is essentially mandated at school.

Armed teachers can and do protect Hogwarts. So why not our schools here in the land of Muggles?

Common sense wand control now! Just two of many, many casualties thanks to the ‘right’ to keep and bear wands.

Moving on to another universe with lots of weapons, we come to Star Wars. While it may not seem like it, the Star Wars sagas are extremely pro-gun. We witness three distinct eras on-screen, the Republic, the Empire, and later the New Republic.

In each of these regimes the characters are free to run around carrying weapons. Personally-owned guns (blasters) and swords for that matter are common, every-day items in a galaxy far, far away.

Han shot first.

It should be noted that for the most part there appears to be no restrictions or any sort of gun control in the Star Wars galaxy. No one bats an eye at individuals walking around with arms on their hips. Many civilian ships are heavily armed and put in at government-owned hangars, which must mean that they are either non-restricted or dubiously overlooked for the sake of plot.

The Empire, which were un-ironically the good guys if you really think about it, didn’t see a need to disarm local populations they controlled. People were allowed to move about fully armed on armed vessels capable of destroying government-owned TIE fighters completely at will.

Self-defense laws in the galaxy seemed to be fairly lax, meaning that, even under the “bad guys'” government, armed self-defense was commonly accepted. In the original film, both Han Solo and Obi-Wan Kenobi get into bar fights where they killed someone and there were zero repercussions.

Luke Skywalker, Han, Chewie, Boba Fett, and even stale-bread characters like the sequel trilogy’s Rey all openly carry weapons into bars, restaurants, on ships, and on various worlds.

Han Solo hands a loaded gun to a violent teenager. Moments later, she begins a killing conscripted children because they want to take her droid.

In the new sequels, Solo willy-nilly hands Rey, a teenage girl, a handgun which she promptly uses to kill Stormtroopers, who are established to be forcibly-recruited child soldiers. She has no hint of remorse, which is strange considering that the writers went to great lengths to humanize the Stormtroopers in the opening scene of The Force Awakens.

Rey should actually be a solid example of the type of exactly person who Hollywood thinks should never have a gun: she’s from a remote backwater, lacks formal education or training, attacks and beats a black stranger who she believes stole a jacket, is shockingly quick to use brutal violence against innocent people, and is dangerously swayed by an ancient religion.

But, after all that, she’s still able to run free and continue using guns and swords on people without any sort of problems. Shouldn’t someone Red Flag her?

Hollywood looks down on America’s gun culture with disgust, but contributes to it more than they may know or care to admit. Films are a big part of our culture, too. In an increasingly post-literate age, movies are our way of telling stories and many of those stories essentially need guns to be compelling.

If they don’t include guns, the morality becomes strikingly confused. In shows like AMC’s Into The Badlands, the society is decidedly anti-gun, but not at all anti-violence, as people are killed by swords and crossbows about every three seconds. They make a point that there are no more guns around and that they are absolutely verboten.

But the show ended up being its own worst enemy in terms of its anti-gun message. It essentially proved that without guns in the hands of the people, the strong ended up forcing everyone into a serf-like state where they stood no chance of freeing themselves. In an act of what was likely ideological self-defense, AMC killed the show off after only a few seasons.

Furthermore, when Hollywood tries to make a no-guns character likable, they end up failing to deliver or force that character to be reliant on those with guns in order to be even slightly believable.

In the Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen has a bow, which is sort of her thing. She was a pauper from an impoverished village in an outlying district that was ruled by a — you guessed it — totalitarian state reminiscent of Rome, but with technology and in neon colors.

Katniss was forced to fight in a gladiatorial arena for the entertainment of the populace and ended up as a poster girl for an armed revolt against the government.

While she never did much with guns aside from carrying a pistol on at least one occasion, literally everyone else in the story is armed to the teeth. And they pretty much carry her from the start because she only has a limited amount of use outside of propaganda purposes.

Was Hunger Games anti-gun? Not at all. Again. It couldn’t have been more pro-gun and pro-individual liberty in its depiction of a subjugated people fighting against government tyranny.

Real weapons and weapons of propaganda blend well in Katniss’ world.

Hollywood has a bad habit of being undone by their significant influence. It could be argued that the entire demand for Western-style guns, lever actions, replica revolvers, and even ammunition is driven by Hollywood Westerns.

I have spent lots of time with the Cowboy Action gun community and have had some great articles run on replica revolvers and can readily say that there is not a single person in those sports that hasn’t been influenced in some way by Hollywood’s Westerns.

The fact is Hollywood’s most successful productions are decidedly pro-gun and conservative, sometimes going so far right to the point of being ethno-nationalistic and anti-immigrant.

What if I told you that there was a wildly successful film about an exiled prince who returns to his kingdom to expel his usurper uncle. The uncle displaced the rightful rulers, his own people, and was responsible for eroding and destroying the rights of the country with open-border policies and allowing an untouchable class of criminal illegal aliens to take over? It’s called The Lion King.

Hollywood has always made guns cool. Steve McQueen, in a a photo by famed photographer John Dominis, aims a revolver. They can shape gun culture- if they embrace it and live with what they built.

What’s more, Hollywood has an identity problem. If they want everyone to have wood-stocked hunting rifles, romantic carry choices like glossy blue revolvers, and ‘reasonable’ guns in their collections instead of what they call assault weapons, they need to represent that as cool and desirable. It is peak idiocy when they demand people stop buying ‘scary’ guns, but that is all that is ever seen on screen these days.

Occasionally you see a gun-toting character that has something some anti-gunners would call reasonable, for instance the .45-70 lever action rifles used heavily in the Jurassic World films and in the gritty Wind River. Both of those films show a normal gun guy that has genuine use for their rifle.

Owen Grady with a Marlin .45-70, an excellent choice for dealing with dinosaurs.

Chris Pratt’s Owen Grady, a animal raptor trainer, uses his .45-70 to fight the terrifying Indominus Rex, a massive, genetically engineered, weaponized dinosaur the bad guys hope to exploit for profit. In Wind River, Jeremy Renner’s character is seen working on reloading ammunition with his children around.

That film managed to accurately represent many common gun owners just by merit of not vilifying them or making their hobbies seem like evil black magic. He eventually saves the day using that rifle.

Entertainment industry elites utterly fail to see that they are creating and perpetuating the very culture that they say they want to eradicate. Witchcraft-practicing singer Lana Del Rey recently released a song called “Looking For America” in which she croons about her wish for a gun-free America.

Mayne she forgot that she ran around with several guns in her music videos, causally blowing a helicopter out of the air or dancing around bonfires with shotguns while singing about how wonderful it is to live in America and to be free. You can’t have it both ways, Lana.

If Hollywood’s elites want to create a world without guns, they are failing miserably. There is no likable gun-grabbing hero. No one likes movies about left-wing ideals because nobody likes movies where mediocrity is the goal of the hero.

Therein lies the problem. The left-wing Hollywood culture hates itself and everything about itself. In a way, it’s like a bunch of prohibitionists lobbying for an alcohol-free world while actively owning and advertising distilleries. They wish they could be the heroes they portray. How sad it must be that the only way they find meaning is by making up these stories they tell themselves about us, the people they hate so much. And who buy their product.


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  1. I think the most laughable scene was one from a 1930’s Hollywood movie that showed the good guy shooting at the Nazi’s near a sky lift. At first he is firing a break open revolver and then 1 second later he runs to another window shooting and the gun changes into a 1913 Mauser 7.65 mm.

    Later in time, a few years ago, they made a black and white movie in Paris for the American audience and it was a remake of a remake of the Star is Born. Its supposed to take place in the 1930’s but shows the male actor with a Ruger M77 and also using a 1970’s Smith & Wesson .38 special. Probably not 1 in a hundred thousand movie goers new the difference.

    • I read about both of those movies on a gun blog I have never actually seen either one of them. What is really laughable is me pretending that I know anything about guns.

      • “quote———-I read about both of those movies on a gun blog I have never actually seen either one of them. What is really laughable is me pretending that I know anything about guns.———-quote”
        I really have to do better at remembering what I say and write. I get so confused sometimes and have to go back to my cut-and-paste plagiarized notes to set myself straight again.

        Wait. Who is that looking back at me in the mirror? Why does he have a glassy, vacant look in his eyes?

  2. Hollywood has made gazillions of dollars making killing & shooting people. appear very stylish and Fun.. I’m sure you remember some of those ” good punchlines ” after billionaire actor waxes someone with his firearm… The truth is Hollywood would not exist without sex and violence… Most of the violence in the movies has to be committed with some type of firearm.. Hell the video game Market wouldn’t even exist without firearms and violence.. Do you honestly believe Hollywood could make a living on chick flicks or comedies? The funny thing is is most Hollywood actors are convicted felons or habitual drug abusers…Most of these People would fail a background check.. Is that why they don’t want to have normal citizens to have firearms? Because they technically cannot own them? As a matter of fact every time one of these people handle a firearm in the movies they should be locked up.. They shouldn’t even be handling simulated weapons.. it would be nice if all people who care about the Second Amendment, would wait until these movies come on Netflix or regular cable TV, instead of spending hard-earned money on hypocrites!

  3. I always like seeing movies where we know that the actors are loud anti gun nuts, armed to the teeth shooting somebody every 45 seconds. Also agree on the star wars anthology where the emperor (g bush) is battling obi wan Muhammad ( Osama bin laden) and their view of how things should be. Don’t get me started about all the contractors killed on the death star. 😉😉😉

    • Depending on how you assign blame for the destruction of the Second Death Star and Alderaan, Luke Skywalker, the good guy, easily has the highest singular kill count for destroying the first Death Star.

  4. Parents should just teach their children that hollywood actors are just that and nothing more. Most of human history actors were considered low class and people not to associate with. It still holds true. They don’t know anything about what they are talking about.

    That is how we should still view them. I wouldn’t care if they were pro or anti. I just don’t want to hear their opinions. It’s the same with music as well.

    • The difference between then and now is that the best actors are incredibly wealthy, some hundreds of millions wealthy. We do not care where they came from, only that they are handsome, beautiful, and glamorous.

    • “….Most of human history actors were considered low class and people not to associate with…..”

      The historical records of Rome at it’s height recorded the same. Actors/Players/Entertainers were not associated with. Only valued as distractions.

  5. Not all Hollywood movies are anti-gun or anti-far right wing. We have the Far Right movie Director Clint Eastwood that glorified the stone cold sniper killer Chris Kyle who specialized in killing even women and children and the gullible Right Wing Public ate up the movie and loved it. East Wood has also made other far out and many times ridiculous Far Right Wing Movies. The only one that flopped was when he made the movie Iwo Jima, the Left was not interested in seeing another WWII War movie and the Right being racist was not interested in seeing a pro Japanese WWII movie either. It did not fit their racist prejudices.

    • Hollywood has made a series of documentary movies about my life called “Despicable Me”. It is only my mastery and perfection of self-loathing and self-hatred that allows me to post a comment trashing Clint Eastwood and Chris Kyle.

  6. Hollywood will never show a trained civilian, law abiding straight person, who is not white, using a gun in self defense.
    Indians are only shown using a bow and arrow. Islanders are only shown using clubs or a spear. Asians are only shown using judo or some other martial fighting art form.

    Some Fan films on YouTube are better than a 30 million dollar movie. They come as westerns, Star Trek, Star Wars, etc,

    • BTW

      When the people who ran the studios agreed with, and made really good money, with the National Socialists in Germany.

      “Over the next few years, the studios actively cultivated personal contacts with prominent Nazis. In 1937, Paramount chose a new manager for its German branch: Paul Thiefes, a member of the Nazi Party. The head of MGM in Germany, Frits Strengholt, divorced his Jewish wife at the request of the Propaganda Ministry. She ended up in a concentration camp”

      “Despite Breen’s concerns, the shooting of Three Comrades went ahead. Screenwriter Budd Schulberg recalled MGM screened the movie for Gyssling: “There was some films that Louis B. Mayer of MGM would actually run … with the Nazi German consul and was willing to take out the things that the consul, that the Nazi, objected to.”

      The Chilling History of How Hollywood Helped Hitler (Exclusive)

  7. Nothing I didn’t already know…as far as I can tell the only anti-gun/ violence mainstream Hollyweird dude who ISN’T a hypocrite is Dustin Hoffman. And he doesn’t work anymore. Oh well. Pick and choose your battles…

  8. Josh, I really enjoyed your article. The irony is wonderfully delicious, well seasoned and delivered with just enough humor to truly set it off.

  9. This isn’t directly related, but this being about Hollywood and guns, I just thought I would share what to me is one of the most hilarious Hollywood gun scenes I’ve ever seen 😀

  10. Hollywood and the gaming industry has created an entire new class of gun owners. Folks that did not grow up around guns and who want ‘military grade’ weapons as opposed to the ‘tool’ firearm like revolvers and single shot shotguns. And those folks are buying their ‘military grade’ weapons in record numbers.

    We are rapidly approaching a time when nearly every home in America will have a firearm. This tripe you here from gun banners that only 1/3 of America owns guns and that gun ownership in America is dying out is not inaccurate. It is a lie. Knowingly told by traitors like vlad and the socialists.

    You can’t stop the signal, vlad.

  11. You’re not going far enough, Josh.

    Superpowers are guns. Superpwers are the great equalizer between the have and have-nots. When faced with superior physical ability, numbers or supernatural powers, the only thing to stand between the average citizen and bodily harm is somebody imbued with extraordinary ability, usually dressed up as super speed, telekinetic power, physical invulnerability, whatever.

    In reality, all this person has is a gun, a device- a super power -that enables him to fight the evils of the world on a level playing field. When superman drops from the sky, it is a good with a gun intervening in a shooting, a robbery, or similar crime. Magic wands are guns. Jedi force powers, if not the light sabers, are guns. Sure, there are guns in these worlds, but superpowers, wands and force powers are superior guns wielded by John Wick plot equivalents.

    Hollywood is awash with guns. They just try to dress it up as everything but guns.

  12. The Second Amendment isn’t just about firearms – it’s about being able to defend oneself from enemies both large and small (governmental and personal).

    Now how do I go about getting one of those wands?

  13. Even though J. K. Rowling almost certainly didn’t intend it, the wand/gun analogy runs deep. As you mentioned, wands are weapons, capable of even mass murder. However, children select their wand, maybe the one they’ll have at hand their whole lives, at 11 years of age. No one is ever without a wand, ever.

    One of the ways we are shown that a character is evil is she denies the need for practical self-defense training at Hogwarts. When the dark wizards take power, they institute wand control and confiscation from “undesirables”. When Harry, Ron, and Hermione are captured after being on the run, the first thing that happens is they are stripped of their wands.

    The Hunger Games has this great passage in the first chapter:

    Even though trespassing in the woods is illegal and poaching carries the severest of penalties, more people would risk it if they had weapons. But most are not bold enough to venture out with just a knife. My bow is a rarity, crafted by my father along with a few others that I keep well hidden in the woods, carefully wrapped in waterproof covers. My father could have made good money selling them, but if the officials found out he would have been publicly executed for inciting a rebellion. Most of the Peacekeepers turn a blind eye to the few of us who hunt because they’re as hungry for fresh meat as anybody is. In fact, they’re among our best customers. But the idea that someone might be arming the Seam would never have been allowed.

    Panem is a dystopia where the districts are ground under the heel of the Capital, which enjoys the yearly ritual human sacrifice of their children as sport. This is maintained partly because the Capital maintains a monopoly on weapons, so no one can fight back.

  14. Those of us having grown up with westerns, and the “regretful” killer or a westerns version of Frank Castle ( The Punisher) forced into taking revenge on many, many people, because of atrocities that were committed on the character and/or his family, perhaps even more so, see the hypocrisy of it all.

    We also saw people like Robin Hood and Ivanhoe use cutting weapons and armor of the time. The long bow and sword. Chain link and plate armor. Even Errol Flynn, as the greatest Robin Hood of them all ( humor me, I am getting older) had a bit of a body count.

    How many people did “The Three Musketeers” kill with the best weapons of THEIR day? King Arthur isn’t without blood on HIS hands. And in many Arthurian themed movies you see the greatest “shock and awe” weapon of fantasy being wielded…. Merlin the Wizard.

    We see the SAA, being the “cutting edge” defense weapon of the time being wielded indiscriminately. We see the “humanized” killers like Jesse James and Billy “the Kid” regretfully racking up a large body count. Even the “anti-hero” characters of Clint Eastwood used the machine gun of the time. The dreaded Gatling Gun

    Jump ahead to today, the “hero” , anti-hero” or vigilante have cutting edge weapons of today. Hollywood uses the “latest and greatest”. Even a gas powered machine-gun as far back as Arnie’s “Predator”.

    Anyone have a true body count for Rambo. Even writers never seem to agree…. other than A LOT of people. TO be fair, in “First Blood” he killed a lot less than in the book. In the book, Rambo killed indiscriminately and a LOT.

    I DO like Sly Stallone movies. But I have a hard time with his politics. He has the RIGHT to his opinion… it is his HYPOCROSY I have a hard time with. A man that has made his fortune of gun violence yet he was documented “pumping” his fist in support of a candidate that is anti-gun at a rally. As I understand, he even has an L.A. concealed carry permit. Too, he has employed armed body guards in some situations.
    Perhaps Rambo SHOULD have died at the end of First Blood, like he did in the book the story is based on.
    ( Spoiler) Trautman goes out into the woods with a shotgun. Care to guess what happened next?

    I have long hoped that Hollywood would be made accountable for the use of weapons. Silencers (Suppressors) would not be quitter than a BB gun. Even a grizzled veteran would not have a stock of FULL-AUTO weaponry unless the stole the weapons or modified the weapons themselves. Gunshots from a shotgun or high powered rifle don’t “blow you through a wall” or “blow you back off a boat and into the water” etc. You can’t get through 5 different confrontations with multiple bad-guys with only one 30 or 40 round mag. You can’t drop a chandelier ( or fill in the blank) with one shot from a hand gun or even hard pressed with a full auto rifle without aiming. You all are realistic enough to get the idea.

    As to Ammo: Cop Killers ( funny how it is never mentioned HOW the bullets are made to be “Cop Killers”.) Gangs do not find thousands of rounds of these bullets… from multiple sources. Tracers do NOT blow up even when hot from a .50 cal. Nor does cutting a cross or an X pattern in hard nosed bullet make it significantly more lethal.

    And to think, back in the ’50s and ’60s the laughable part was a “silencer” on a revolver.

    Respects- John

  15. Where is “That thingy that goes up” on that squinty-eyed cowboy’s long gun? And what’s up with that shiny roll-y thing in the middle of John Wayne’s and Steve McQueen’s Glocks?

  16. Into The Badlands had to be a gun free zone. Otherwise, all their nifty wire-fu fighting would end like Indy’s sword fight in Raiders of the Last Ark.

    • I just want to know what ammo he was packing into that lever action that has the knock down power of a Nitro Express, the recoil of a .22LR and a magazine tube that challenges the capacity of a standard AR or AK box magazines. I hope he carried replacement barrels in his knapsack.

  17. Well cock my Glock, hollyweird makes money on that which against they rail!

    That’s harder than brain surgery, in a windstorm.

  18. Here is a link every decent American can use to send a message so easy with a few clicks and a prewritten letter(if needed) to all GOP Senators & Trump to stop this illegal gun control! This week the threat is real and the anti-gun house will likely pass several gun control bills and scream the sky is falling! They will call Trump and the Senate all kinds of names if they don’t pass their commie gun control!


  19. Good post but you may want to take a minute or two to read over what you have written to catch those typos before publishing.

  20. In addition to the blatant hypocrisy, the movie industry has convinced the general public that 1 shot equals one kill, so who needs a ‘high capacity magazine’. Also non gun owners think that a ‘silencer’ is exactly that, no noise is heard, so only assassins need one.

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