New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd rips into Lincoln director Steven Spielberg and writer Tony Kushner in her latest article for what she deems a blatant historical fabrication in their epic drama, which is tipped to scoop Oscars at the Academy Awards on Sunday (February 24, 2013). The movie shows two Connecticut legislators voting against the Emancipation Proclamation when in fact they voted for it.
In her article - which has been swirling around industry sites for a couple of days - Dowd suggests, "I'm a princess-and-the-pea on this issue, but I think Spielberg should refilm the scene or dub in "Illinois" for "Connecticut" before he sends out his DVDs and leaves students everywhere thinking the Nutmeg State is nutty." It's difficult to understand why Spielberg changed the facts in the movie, though the answer may lie in the reality that it was two Democrats who opposed the freeing of the slaves (not, as the movie shows, one Republican and one Democrat). Did Spielberg and Kushner make the change to pander to the generally liberal leaning world of Hollywood? Perhaps not, though it seems a strange amendment anyway.
It's likely that Lincoln will miss out on many of the major honors at the Academy Awards this weekend, though Spielberg could still walk away with Best Director. His leading man Daniel Day-Lewis should win Best Actor, though it appears Ben Affleck's Argo is now leading the race for Best Picture. The Iranian-embassy drama has also attracted criticism for its historical inaccuracies.