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Fox, A+E Threaten North Carolina Boycott in Response to Anti-LGBT Law

North Carolina state capital building
Shutterstock / John Wollwerth

A+E Networks and 21st Century Fox may refrain from filming future projects in North Carolina if the state does not repeal a controversial law that bars local LGBT anti-discrimination ordinances.

The companies have stopped short, however, of withdrawing current projects from the state. Principal photography on “Shots Fired,” a drama series for Fox Broadcasting produced by 20th Century Fox Television, began yesterday in Charlotte, with production expected to continue through July. Production in the state is also already under way on “Six,” a History miniseries about the U.S. Marines who killed Osama bin Laden, produced by A+E Studios and the Weinstein Company. There are no plans to relocate either project.

Fox indicated Wednesday that it would “reconsider” shooting future productions in North Carolina. A+E has ruled out future shoots in the state.

“Production on ‘Six’ is already under way, however we will not consider North Carolina for any new productions,” an A+E spokesperson said in response to a question about whether the company had considered withdrawing the production from the state in response to public outcry over the law.

Twenty-first Century Fox responded to a question about “Shots Fired” with a statement: “On behalf of our creative partners and colleagues who made commitments to shoot in North Carolina prior to this bill being signed, we join the growing coalition of businesses that hope to see this act repealed. In addition, we will reconsider future filming commitments in North Carolina if the Act is not repealed.”

The MPAA last week expressed opposition to the anti-LGBT legislation, shortly after it was signed into law by the state’s Republican Gov. Pat McCrory. Filmmaker Rob Reiner also last week said that he would not shoot any future priojects in the state unless the law was repealed.

Following pressure from the entertainment industries and other businesses, Georgia’s governor this week announced that he would veto a religious-freedom bill that would allow businesses to refuse to serve customers based on sexual orientation.