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The fact that Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg's The Interview is coming out has been seen as a big win for First Amendment rights.Rather than backing down and letting fear and threats stop our freedom of expression, the crude comedy will be coming to theaters tomorrow and is already available for rental and purchase online. People are feeling very patriotic about the movie - but one Vermont theater is taking that idea to the next level by having a special deal for theater-goers who come carrying our nation's founding document.
The Vermont-centric website Seven Days has posted an article about an independent theater in Burlington called the Palace 9 that will be showing The Interview starting on December 31st, and while this may not seem all that special (given that there are more than 300 cinemas nationwide screening the movie), what makes the location unique is the special bonus it will be giving to select customers. While speaking to the press, theater owner Merrill Jarvis III revealed that any customer who shows up carrying a copy of the constitution will be given free popcorn to enjoy with their screening. Said Jarvis,
"We need to understand our rights. I'm proud to be an American on the front line against terrorism."
While Americans were certainly upset at the idea of major corporations backing down due to terrorist threats, really the bigger issue that has hung in the air this past week was the fact that the cancellation of The Interview felt like a violation of Freedom of Speech. If a movie is stopped because it offends the tyrannical dictator of another country, a dangerous precedent can be set and start to limit personal liberties that our country was founded on. Fortunately, that's been ceased.
What's going to be interesting to see this week is not only how successful The Interview is financially, but where that money winds up coming from. Surely the Palace 9 won't be the only theater offering treats for fans, and there will likely be something special in the experience of seeing the movie with a large crowd, but the simultaneous release on Google/YouTube could mean that people just choose to stay at home and watch it on their TV or computers. Either way, it should tell us something interesting about the future of movie-going.
In The Interview, James Franco and Seth Rogen star as Dave Skylark and Aaron Rappaport, a vain celebrity journalist and producer, respectively, who get the chance of a lifetime when they learn that North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un (Randall Park) is a big fan of their work and wants them to interview him. When this news gets to the CIA, a plan is orchestrated that will see Dave and Aaron enter the Asian nation as spies who are actually aiming to kill the fascist leader. Look for it in theaters tomorrow.