In its bid at franchise-hood, “Ender’s Game” has been dinged by a number of factors, including a campaign by human rights groups to boycott the movie because of author Orson Scott Card’s anti-gay politics.
But Roberto Orci, a producer on the science fiction adaptation, has some words of caution—and a somewhat bold analogy--to those looking to skip the movie on that basis.
“If we only allowed art from artists we agreed with we’d have pretty terrible art,” he told The Times in a recent interview. “I’m not going to dismiss the Declaration of Independence because Thomas Jefferson had a slave,” he added.
The movie has been attacked because Card is famously opposed to gay marriage and gay rights. He was part of a group that had been instrumental in the passage of Proposition 8 and has made a number of comments expressing his opposition to gay marriage.
In a 2004 article he said that if gay people “insist on calling what they do ‘marriage,’ they are not turning their relationship into what my wife and I have created, because no court has the power to change what their relationship actually is. Instead they are attempting to strike a death blow against the well-earned protected status of our, and every other, real marriage.” There's also this.
Orci continued a point articulated by director Gavin Hood and others associated with”‘Ender’s Game” that the message of the film—which includes themes of otherness and centers on an underdog character who finds vindication—is one that gay rights supporters should applaud.
"We're sensitive whenever something we do hurts someone,” he said. “But the movie completely reflects who we are and our values. It’s very much about tolerance.”
Whether for political or aesthetic reasons, though, film-goers seem to be tuning out. The movie is on pace for a $27-million opening weekend, considerably lower than a $100-million production with extensive marketing tends to bring in.
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