In a letter to Warner Bros., relatives of victims of the 2012 massacre during a screening of "The Dark Knight Rises" at a theater in Aurora, Colorado, expressed concerns about the upcoming "Joker" movie. They are asking the entertainment studio to donate to gun casualty organizations and advocate for gun reform.
"When we learned that Warner Bros was launching a movie called" Joker "that features the character as a protagonist with a sympathetic storyline, it gave us a break," says the letter, which was obtained by Variety. It was sent Tuesday to new Warner Bros. CEO Ann Sarnoff and was signed by several family members.
In a statement to the Times, Warner Bros. He expressed his condolences to families and victims of mass shootings and highlighted his history of giving to victims of violence and his support for bipartisan legislation to deal with the epidemic.
"At the same time, Warner Bros. believes that one of the functions of narrative is to provoke difficult conversations about complex issues," the statement said. Make no mistake: neither the fictional character Joker nor the movie is an endorsement of any kind of violence in the real world. It is not the intention of the movie, the filmmakers or the studio to keep this character as a hero. "
Scheduled for release on October 4, the dark, bold and widely anticipated adaptation of Todd Phillips's comics starring Joaquin Phoenix has sparked controversy over the violence of the film in a time of increasing gunfire.
The Hollywood Reporter reported on Tuesday that the Aurora theater, where the mass shooting occurred, will not air the movie, citing a theater official.
Families have clarified that they are not calling for a ban or boycott of the film by writing: "We support your right to freedom of speech and expression. But as anyone who has ever seen a comic can tell you: with great power comes a so we are asking you to use your massive platform and influence to join us in our struggle to build safer communities with fewer weapons. "
Instead, the letter said, "We are inviting you to be part of the growing chorus of corporate leaders who understand that they have a social responsibility to keep us all safe."
On July 20, 2012, a masked gunman killed 12 people and injured 70 when he participated in a movie screening of "The Dark Knight Rises". The police said James Holmes, who identified themselves as the Joker, It was armed with a rifle, a shotgun and two pistols.
Among the signers of the letter were Lonnie and Sandy Phillips, whose daughter Jessica Ghawi was killed in the shooting. They have teamed up with Igor Volsky, director of the nonprofit Guns Down America, for gun control, to draft the letter.
Families are also asking Warner Bros. cease political contributions to candidates who accept NRA money and oppose arms reform; use your political influence to pressure Congress to reform arms; and donate money to armed violence intervention programs.
"Because the federal government has not approved reforms that raise the standard of gun ownership in the United States, big companies like Warner Brothers have a responsibility to act," the letter says. "We certainly hope you do."