Zachery Bryan, who played Brad Taylor on the beloved sitcom “Home Improvement” as a child, just re-emerged to write an op-ed for Fox News in which he discussed the working class families of Hollywood and how coronavirus has impacted them.
In his op-ed called “Zachery Bryan: Coronavirus has hit Hollywood’s working class families, too — and they’re worried,” Bryan wrote that he understands why so many Americans believe that Hollywood has lost touch with reality.
“Like me, you probably saw the video compilation of celebrities singing John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ in response to the global pandemic,” he wrote. “Of course, in very quick fashion the video was parodied as people reacted against another example of an out-of-touch Hollywood.”
Bryan, 38, went on to say that Americans are understandably turned off by the “shallow gestures” celebrities have been making while working class folks are struggling just to survive. The actor then recounted a conversation he recently had with a friend.
“[S]he expressed concern that if the coronavirus shutdown goes on too long, they won’t be able to make their monthly housing payment,” he wrote. “It was a reminder that Hollywood, just like the rest of the country, is filled with support and service work positions. Jobs that you can’t do from home. Like millions of others, these are the folks that run the risk of suffering the most from the economic fallout of COVID-19.”
Bryan explained that as a child actor who later worked behind the scenes as a producer, he has a unique perspective on the situation. “Although I saw firsthand the elitist and cutthroat nature of Hollywood that it’s known for, I’ve also had the opportunity to work with some amazing people,” he said. “They are everyday Americans who come from all over the country to pursue their dreams in entertainment. These people are the engine that makes Hollywood run.”
“While A-list celebrities can’t help using their award show speeches to mock anyone that doesn’t hold to their elitist views, the dirty little secret is that they represent the elite 1 percent of Hollywood,” he wrote. “The rest of the people in the entertainment industry are everyday folks living paycheck to paycheck and struggling to make a living wage.”
Bryan explained that while it’s hard not to dismiss the Hollywood elites who really have lost touch with reality, it’s important to remember that there are tons of working class Americans who are also a part of Hollywood, and they should not be grouped in with the few wealthy entertainers making fools of themselves.
“It’s a great privilege for me, as someone who came from middle America, to create alongside those who work hard to care for their families and pursue their dreams,” he continued. “These are the men and women who come in at dawn and are still there hours after dusk when the celebrities and their entourages have left. Like Americans in any other industry, they are the backbone of Hollywood, the ones who make sure things get done.”
Bryan concluded by saying that he can relate to people who are disgusted by some celebrities and their “political statements” and “tone-deaf actions.”
“I do, too,” he ended the piece. “But please be sure to separate the 1 percent of Hollywood from the 99 percent that represents the hardworking, everyday Americans who, like everyone else across this amazing country, are scared about losing their job, figuring out how to provide for their family and cheering on all the people who are at battle with this unseen enemy.”
Many of the elites of Hollywood deserve to be dismissed for their ridiculous tone-deaf opinions, but Bryan is right to point out that Hollywood has it’s own working class just like every other industry. It’s a shame that the working Americans of Hollywood often find themselves being grouped in with wealthy A-list stars whose ignorance is such an embarrassment to their community.