LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — As more and more Hollywood stars speak out against President Trump’s ban on Muslim travel, the effects on TV’s pilot season are already being felt.
KCAL9’s Peter Daut spoke to casting directors concerned over the ban.
The entertainment business has become increasingly global with film companies depending on people who can easily travel.
The announced restrictions and fear of even greater scrutiny are giving many in Hollywood a headache.
It’s no secret that shows like “Homeland” rely heavily on foreign talent.
But Hollywood is now struggling in the wake of President Trump’s executive order which temporarily bans immigration to the U.S. from seven mostly Muslim countries.
Immigration experts warn that any overhaul in the visa application process could create delays potentially thrown a wrench into productions and delays.
The ban comes just as the TV industry’s pilot season is underway — when hundreds of foreign actors travel to Los Angeles for meetings and casting sessions, often on expedited visas.
“It’s ridiculous. Why would you want to block people from coming to do their job?,” says Hamzah Saman, owner of Arab-American Casting.
Saman says the issue is causing anxiety for those wanting to work on U.S. productions.
“It’s going to hurt Hollywood, it’s going to hurt a lot of people who’s very talented,” says Saman.
Studios and production companies are reportedly evaluating how the Muslim travel ban and expected visa delays for all foreign nations will impact decisions on pilots and series’ pickups.
In the meantime, creatives are speaking out. Asghar Farhadi, the Iranian director of the Oscar-nominated “The Salesman,” said he will not travel to Los Angeles to attend the Academy Awards ceremony.
“A lot of Arabic people in Hollywood feel they’re not wanted. and now, even more,” said Saman
The ban may also affect anyone already in the U.S. on a temporary visa who leaves.
So those planning to promote a film internationally could be more likely to skip the press tour.