Fox News canceled a national ad buy for a 30-second commercial promoting an Oscar-nominated short documentary warning against fascism because the broadcaster’s CEO found the material “not appropriate.”
The spot was a promotion for “It Can Happen Here,” a documentary about a rally of thousands of Nazi sympathizers in Madison Square Garden in 1939, just before the outbreak of World War II. The film is nominated for an Oscar in the Best Documentary Short category at the upcoming Academy Awards.
The spot was supposed to air during Sean Hannity’s show in Los Angeles on Monday night. When the show was preempted by President Trump’s own fascist rally, the distributor’s ad buyer tried to purchase a national slot for it later in the week.
On Wednesday, Fox informed the buyer that network CEO Suzanne Scott had determined that the ad “was not approprite for our air,” according to the Hollywood Reporter. The spot will still run locally in Los Angeles on Thursday to fulfill the original ad buy.
Fox’s president of ad sales, Marianne Gambelli, later told the Daily Beast that the ad was rejected because “it was full of disgraceful Nazi imagery regardless of the film’s message and did not meet our guidelines.” As the Beast pointed out, that didn’t stop Fox from airing a 30-second spot promoting Dinesh D’Souza’s “Death of a Nation” last year, despite that film also being full of Nazi imagery.