No Industry Immune

BY LUKE SMITH
Arts Editor
Published September 10, 2002

Sept. 11, 2002 changed everything. Sports halted play, schools let out. About the only thing that kept running was the horrific imagery being played out across news broadcasts on nearly every channel. Every facet of life was altered, somehow in some fashion.

The entertainment industry was no exception. Money seemed to stop mattering as networks lost millions in advertising solely because they elected to minimize commercial breaks. Movie executives shelved their financial endeavors and held movies like "Collateral Damage" back from box offices. Television's most prestigious night, the Emmy's, took a backseat to the reality that became America, being delayed numerous times. A reality that no country should've had to face.

Jokes stopped being funny.

Artists delayed albums, neo-garage rockers The Strokes held back their overly hyped debut Is This It so the native New Yorkers could remove the track "New York City Cops" from the album.

In one of the most touching post-Sept. 11 moments, Dave Lettermen's tearful return to late night television set the standard for how all entertainment would function in a post-Sept. 11 world. His choking exchange with Dan Rather outclassed all television events in the time after the attacks.

Musicians put on a benefit performance, "Concert for New York." The show featured talent from every echelon of the pop spectrum. The event was organized by none other than Sir Paul McCartney and featured the likes of David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Elton John and Eric Clapton amongst scores of other musical talent.

In the days surrounding Sept. 11, the separation between celebrity and simpleton. Normal people became David Bowie's "Heroes" if just for one day. And for one day, everyone was on the same page.

- Luke Smith, Arts Editor