Steven Spielberg’s daughter responds to Hollywood nepotism debate

"I know deep down that I worked hard to get where I am"

Destry Spielberg, daughter to filmmaker Steven, has weighed in on a recent debate on Hollywood nepotism.

The topic arose after a casting update regarding Spielberg’s short film broke on social media. As reported by Deadline, Sean Penn’s son Hopper had joined the project, which was co-directed by Spielberg and Stephen King’s son Owen King.

A heated debate consequently arose between producer Franklin Leonard and Ben Stiller on the advantages that nepotism can bring within the film industry.


“Hollywood’s a meritocracy, right?” Leonard wrote in a sarcastic tweet regarding the casting update.

Stiller, who is son to legendary comedians Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara, engaged with the producer over a number of tweets.

“Everyone has their path. Wish them all the best,” he wrote in one post.

Stiller’s stance on the subject was met with broader criticism on social media. “How many Black, Latino, Native & Asian people do you think had parents who were in a position to give them their first acting gigs?” tweeted one user.

Destry Spielberg later engaged with both Leonard and Stiller in a since-deleted tweet, “I am just a young aspiring female filmmaker who admires the art of cinema,” she wrote, as reported by E!.


“People can argue nepotism, but I know deep down that I worked hard to get where I am and it wasn’t easy. Beyond proud of this film and proud of the team it took to make it.”

After deleting the post, Spielberg wrote another tweet further clarifying her stance.

“I acknowledge that I was born with privilege!” she wrote. “I own that through and through! I make it my mission to bring new talent into the industry & give opportunities to artists of all backgrounds. No one should be left out because of the connections they don’t have.”