Bad news for all those who actually watch the opening and closing ceremonies at the Summer Olympics; Steven Spielberg has dropped out as director at the Beijing Games. Or actually he was going to be the "artistic adviser," whatever that means. All I know is that now my dream of watching Dennis Weaver being chased by a giant semi truck in costumed pantomime form has been dashed to pieces.

Spielberg announced he would no longer act as an artistic adviser for the opening and closing ceremonies, saying he could not reconcile working on the Olympics while China and other nations were not doing enough to ease the suffering in Darfur. "Sudan's government bears the bulk of the responsibility for these ongoing crimes but the international community, and particularly China, should be doing more," Spielberg said in a statement. "China's economic, military and diplomatic ties to the government of Sudan continue to provide it with the opportunity and obligation to press for change."

Of course I'm not sure how the situation in Darfur has changed since Spielberg originally agreed to the Olympics job, but whatever. Our thoughts must now turn toward his replacement. Ridley Scott? The Coen brothers? No, my vote of course goes to Quentin Tarantino.

On a more serious note, though; is this Olympics boycott issue gaining steam? Spielberg's announcement is a HUGE snub, and the Chinese must be apoplectic. Many athletes are starting to speak up here, and when it gets to the point where nations start pulling out โ€” and it could โ€” well, this could get huge in no time.

Spielberg Drops Out As Beijing Olympics Adviser Over Darfur [The Huffington Post]
Spielberg In Darfur Snub To China [BBC News]