Delta ends sponsorship over Trump look-alike killing scene


The airline found issue with the summer production of Julius Caesar, featuring the assassination of the title character, who in this staging bears an unmistakable resemblance to Donald Trump.

Henry, who already played a Trump stand-in on "Scandal" a year ago, models his Caesar nearly perfectly after the man in the Oval Office. He even has a wife with a Slavic accent.

The recreation has drawn ire from those who say the show promotes violence against the President.

"Donald Trump has been president for less than a year", wrote The Hollywood Reporter theater critic Frank Scheck in his review.

"Danger knows full well that Caesar is more unsafe than he", reads a sign promoting the production.

Others, including former executive director of Vets For Freedom Pete Hegseth, have pointed out that the production is partially funded by US taxpayers by way of the National Endowment for the Arts.

Delta contributes between $100,000 and $499,000 to the theater annually, the article explained, and there was no word if other major sponsors, which includes Bank of America, would follow suit.

Thousands of people line up every summer for free tickets for Shakespeare in the Park.

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The Atlanta-based airline released a statement Sunday saying the graphic staging of "Julius Caesar" does not reflect its values and "crossed the line on the standards of good taste". Serious question, when does "art" become political speech & does that change things?

According to the Public Theater's corporate sponsorship page, the play is sponsored by NYT, Bank of American, American Express and Delta Airlines. Hours later, facing mounting pressure from some users on social media, Delta made public its decision to pull its support for the play.

"'Julius Caesar is about how fragile democracy is". "To fight the tyrant does not mean imitating him". Eustis' statement doesn't directly reference Trump either.

"I'm sure that's not an accident", Benson said.

The artistic director said he'd hosted politicians before, including Vice President Mike Pence, who was booed at a production of the Lin-Manuel Miranda musical.

Performances of the assassination scene began just days before comedian Kathy Griffin was criticized for posing for a photograph in which she gripped a bloodied rendering of Trump's head.

Indeed, some Shakespeare in the Park fans seemed nothing less than thrilled about the artistic license director Eusctice exercised in bringing together this year's rendition of "Julius Caesar".

The play opened May 23 in previews and runs through June 18 with an opening on Monday.