A controversial film that several theatres have banned is coming to Vernon.
Unplanned, an anti-abortion film, has no scheduled Cineplex showings in B.C. And Salmon Arm’s Salmo Theatre pulled the film after alleged threats were made.
Yet the Vernon Towne Cineman says it will be running the film, “due to high demand.”
“Over the last month or so, we have received many phone calls and emails from Vernon citizens on both sides of the conversation about the film Uunplanned,” said Gerry Sellars, owner of the Cinema.
“I have been working in this business for well over 40 years and controversial films on the big screen are not new to me or to the industry as a whole. That said, the decision to move forward with screenings of this particular film was a complicated one and it was not made easily or lightly.”
Sellars sticks to his decision, noting that he loves Canada for not shying away from differences, but embraces them and rallies behind freedom of expression.
“In this instance many of us will have to set aside our own personal beliefs and remember that living in a country that censors content, opinions and points of view because they are different from our own is not a country that any of us would want to live in.”
The responsibility of determining whether content is appropriate for movie audiences and the audience’s age perameters falls to the provincial government, through the Film Classification Board, Sellars explains.
“I understand and can appreciate the concerns about the film, but it is up to each of us to decide whether or not we want to see it. In Canada, we have that option and I think it is an important thing to remember.”
Unplanned will run as a regularly scheduled show starting Saturday, July 13 and playing until July 18, at least.
The film is based on one of the youngest Planned Parenthood clinic directors in the nation, Abby Johnson, who was involved in upwards of 22,000 abortions and counseled countless women on their reproductive choices. Her passion surrounding a woman’s right to choose led her to become a spokesperson for Planned Parenthood, fighting to enact legislation for the cause she so deeply believed in. Until the day she saw something that changed everything.
Cineplex only has the film scheduled for four theatres, one in Saskatoon, Regina, Toronto and Nova Scotia.