Trigger warning: Carolla, Prager team up to tackle safe spaces
Comedian Adam Carolla is teaming up with conservative commentator Dennis Prager to produce a new documentary exposing the phenomenon of campus "safe spaces."
Carolla and Prager are crowdfunding the $500,000 needed to produce the film "because Hollywood won't," and have already raised nearly $350,000.
Adam Carolla plans to expose some inconvenient truths about the “safe spaces” that insulate today’s college students from genuine intellectual diversity in a forthcoming documentary.
Carolla is teaming up with conservative commentator Dennis Prager to produce No Safe Spaces, a film shedding light on the contemporary antipathy toward free speech in academia, specifically the phenomenon of students being “protected” from encountering ideas they might find distasteful.
In an interview with Campus Reform, Carolla said he does not anticipate that the film will have the same impact or financial success as Super Size Me or An Inconvenient Truth, but nonetheless considers the project an important step toward restoring intellectual diversity to college campuses.
“I don’t expect this to be that, but it will be somewhere between zero and that,” he predicted, remarking, “that’s how I go about through life.”
The movie, Carolla explained, will show footage of talks that Carolla and Prager have given on college campuses, along with theatrical elements such as re-enactments depicting “Young Dennis” and “Young Adam” that are intended to break up the monotony of a typical documentary format.
In order to get the film onto the big screen, however, Carolla and Prager need to fundraise $500,000 “because Hollywood won’t,” as they wrote on Facebook. As of press time, they have raised $347,879 through the crowdfunding website Indiegogo.
“I’ve made movies in [Hollywood] and I’ve tried to make them the traditional way,” Carolla said, citing his experience as a non-blockbuster producer as a factor that convinced him and Prager to go the crowdfunding route.
Carolla also expressed doubts that the film would earn a large profit, another reason that he and Prager decided to pursue crowdfunding rather than spending their own money to produce it.
“I wouldn’t make it [myself] because it’s not a good, safe investment,” Carolla told Campus Reform. “These things don’t usually pay out.”
Nonetheless, he’s willing to take the risk of co-producing a film about a college culture “with the potential combination of narcissism with kids, and the faculty not essentially stepping in and imposing whatever rules...whatever exists or should exist on the campus.”
Carolla contended that the anti-free speech hysteria sweeping the nation’s campuses is largely due to “a lack of respect for authority, which is happening all around us,” a condition that has been on full display at Evergreen State College, where students recently drove a professor from campus and held the school’s president hostage because the professor had had the temerity to question a “Day of Absence” event during which white students and faculty members were asked to vacate campus.
Carolla said that he and Prager would like “to go wherever the action is” when they take their documentary on tour, and indicated that Evergreen could easily make the cut.
“Evergreen would be great to visit. We want to go East Coast and West Coast and middle, and [we] want to spread around,” Carolla explained. “I never went to college, so I don’t know what schools we should visit. Vanderbilt or Dartmouth; I don’t have any preferences at this point.”
Another school on Carolla’s wish-list is the University of California-Berkeley, where a riot by masked “anti-fascist” protesters recently forced the school’s College Republicans chapter to cancel an appearance by controversial speaker Milo Yiannopoulos.
Carolla drew a distinction between agitators like Yiannopoulos, whom he labelled “kind of a shock jock,” and the approach that he and Prager intend to take toward promoting free speech.
“I think he’s a provocateur. I think he goes there and sort of attempts to agitate and provoke, and we’re much more into discussion and ideas,” Carolla explained, adding that unlike Yiannopoulos’ “Dangerous Faggot” speaking tour, he and Prager intend to do “a little more of a fact-finding tour” rather than “trying to shout people down or convert them to something.”
When asked if there will be trigger warnings flashed before every scene in the documentary, Carolla expressed interest in incorporating such a gag.
“I’m going to write that down now,” he chortled. “That’s a good idea.”
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @JacksonRichman