According to Deadline, rumors of the beef have been largely exaggerated. Or even fabricated.
During a panel at SXSW, Jeffrey Katzenberg had this to say about the quasi-controversy:
“I talked to Steven about this yesterday. I asked him very specifically,” Katzenberg said during the panel. He said, ‘I absolutely did not say that.’
Is it possible that Steven Speilberg's team, including his longtime business partner and friend Katzenberg, have helped him walk this whole thing back? Katzenberg went on:
“...a journalist was onto a story about this and had heard a rumor about Steven... They called a spokesperson to get a comment and honestly, just twisted it around... He has not opined at all, nor has he aligned with some specific thing...[Spielberg] knows there is a realignment coming and he wants everyone to win and prosper.”
It did seem somewhat out of character for Spielberg to suddenly be so vocally and vehemently opposed to something like Netflix movies being eligible for Oscars. It's an antagonistic position for a man who has avoided those in his long storied career.
But one is left wondering, is this part of an attempt to undo any potential damage?