Bill Maher Advocates for the U.S. Release of The Apprentice and Critiques Industry

During a recent episode of Real Time, Bill Maher expressed his frustration with the lack of interest in the U.S. release of The Apprentice, a film featuring Sebastian Stan as Donald Trump and Jeremy Strong as Roy Cohn. Maher emphasized the significance of the movie, referring to it as Trump’s origin story under Cohn’s guidance. Despite the film’s distribution deals in various countries, including Japan, Canada, the U.K., and Germany, Maher criticized the reluctance of U.S. distributors to touch it. He highlighted his disappointment by stating, “This is MY industry, you f*cking p*ssies. Find a way to release this movie.”

The film’s delay in securing a U.S. deal can be attributed to several factors. Industry experts anticipated that a streamer would be the most suitable platform for the film, given its controversial content and the ongoing election year. The inclusion of a scene in which the Trump character reportedly rapes his former wife Ivana raised legal concerns and hindered progress towards a domestic pact. Additionally, threats of legal action from Trump’s team and the dissatisfaction of a key financier further complicated the negotiation process.

The discussion on Real Time delved into Trump’s manipulation tactics and his ability to leverage power effectively. Former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo highlighted Trump’s skill in manipulating situations to his advantage, referencing the recent Dominion lawsuit against Fox. Cuomo emphasized Trump’s influence on media narratives and public opinion through strategic use of power dynamics. Former Congressman Adam Kinzinger also weighed in on the conversation, pointing out the weaponization of cancel culture by certain individuals and groups for political gain.

The evolution of cancel culture from a social phenomenon to a political tool was a prominent theme in the conversation. Kinzinger highlighted the shift from consumer boycotts of “overly woke” corporations to a strategic offensive by certain entities. The utilization of cancel culture as a weapon in ideological battles reflects a broader trend of polarization and extremism in contemporary discourse. Maher’s call for the U.S. release of The Apprentice encapsulates a broader concern regarding the stifling of controversial narratives in media and entertainment.

Bill Maher’s advocacy for the U.S. release of The Apprentice sheds light on the challenges facing creators and distributors in navigating politically sensitive content. The film’s depiction of Trump’s early years under Roy Cohn’s influence resonates with current political dynamics, making it a contentious yet crucial piece of cultural commentary. Maher’s critique of the industry’s reluctance to engage with such content underscores the ongoing battle for creative freedom and expression in an increasingly polarized society. The intersection of entertainment, politics, and cancel culture poses complex challenges for artists and audiences alike, highlighting the need for nuanced discussions and critical engagement with contentious subject matter.


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