Tuesday on the CBS Early Show host Erica Hill gave new meaning to the term “white wedding” when her segment on why “we” like wedding movies so much managed to focus exclusively on films about white folks.
In keeping with the show’s committment to feeding its viewers a breakfast of contemporary culture, it is completely appropriate that the main course was a discussion about the popularity of wedding-themed movies–especially since there were three of them making money at the box office last weekend (Bridesmaids $26+million, Jumping the Broom $7+million, Something Borrowed $6+million).
Hill began the segment with a two-and-a-half minute montage of popular wedding film clips that included Bridesmaids and Something Borrowed, as well as a few older hits like Father of the Bride, 27 Dresses, and My Best Friend’s Wedding. Jumping the Broom, a smart and funny “class clash” film (starring Angela Bassett, Loretta Devine, Paula Patton and Laz Alonzo) about a Black couple marrying on Martha’s Vineyard did not make the montage.
I don’t know how these things work at the network level — I mean, I don’t know if palms are greased or advertising dollars are required to get the show’s anchor to spend five minutes dishing with the director of a just-released movie (Bridesmaids) and the author of the book upon which another just-released film (Something Borrowed) is based. If some saavy media buyers spent time and/or money to get that done, I say more power to ’em, and if Hill would have focused her discussion on those two movies, I wouldn’t be writing about this today.
I am writing a post about it, however, because the Early Show producers chose to frame the discussion with a broader story about the wedding movie “trend” that has overtaken Hollywood. According to Hill’s monologue intro, the opening weekend success of Bridesmaids
“got us to thinking what is it about wedding movies that we love oh so much.”
I’m not sure who Hill’s “we” refers to, but once she went there, reaching back twenty years to dust off Father of the Bride, when Jumping the Broom is currently in theaters, constitutes a snub.
I”m not saying it was intentional. I can easily see how an intern or production assistant was given the task of researching popular wedding-themed movies and they went straight to Google with the terms “wedding” and “bride.” Poor kid can’t be blamed for not knowing that “jumping” and “broom” had something to do with getting hitched. If they had been more thorough, however, while they were including Katherine Heigl and Julia Roberts on the list of could-be brides “we” have enjoyed watching over the years, they might also have added Jennifer Lopez (Monster in-Law, The Wedding Planner) and Nia Long (The Best Man).
It should not rest on an intern or PA to be responsible for something as important as reflecting America’s beautiful, flavorful diversity over the broadcast waves. Since this show is dishing out American culture on a daily basis, someone on the Early Show’s staff should be there specifically because they have an eagle eye for diversity, and if there is no one on staff who does, someone should be hired right now.
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Erica Hill seems like a very nice lady and I’m sure she didn’t mean to…Wait just a minute. Listen very carefully at the 6:22 mark. Did she say that these wedding films are “attracting a whiter audience?” Oh. Well, okay then. That explains everything.
(Hahahahahaha. I crack myself up.) <It was a joke, people. No mean emails, please.