Utah Theater Nixes Brokeback
A movie theater owned by auto magnate and Utah Jazz owner Larry Miller pulled Brokeback Mountain from its line-up Thursday, advising news media to remove showtimes for the film from its ads.
Miller told a radio reporter, "[Booking a movie like Brokeback is] something that I have to let the market speak to some degree. I don't think I'm qualified to be the community censor."
It would have been a good business decision for Miller, as the movie was pulling in approximately $3,500 per screen over the weekend, more per screen than the weekend's #1 film Hostel, and double the average of Spielberg's Munich.
Yet two hours later, after the reporter had filled Miller in on the plot of the film, the schedule was changed. A sign at the theater's ticket window read: "There has been a change in booking and we will not be showing 'Brokeback Mountain.' We apologize for any inconvenience."
The bigots at Utah Eagle Forum, that state's offshoot of the pro-family organization founded in 1972 by Phyllis Schlafly, were giddy over the censorship. Said President Gayle Ruzicka: "I think it sets an example for all the people in Utah and, like I said before, [Miller is] my new hero. It's such a terrible show, and it is such a horrible message. I just think (pulling the show) tells the young people especially that maybe there is something wrong with this show."
Focus Features called the theater's decision to dishonor their licensing agreement "deplorable."
ALSO: Poulsbo, Washington theater reneges on Brokeback as well. Activist: "I'm suspicious about what was really behind this, but there's no way to really know. Why didn't this theater fight to get its share? Did they say, 'Well, that's a gay movie, let's get another copy of the penguin movie?"
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