Activists object to disparaging remarks
MGM is refusing to make any changes to its industry-topping “Barbershop” theatrical release to cater to the wishes of the Rev. Jesse Jackson and the Rev. Al Sharpton.
Indeed, the studio is moving full steam ahead on a sequel.
MGM said Wednesday it has no plans to respond to a threat by Sharpton that he will call for a boycott of the movie if the studio does not apologize by Friday, or to make changes to any future video versions.
The activists demanded the studio delete dialogue in a scene from the film that the black leaders and activists feel is disparaging to Jackson, Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King Jr.
“MGM stands behind ‘Barbershop,’ its filmmakers, and artists, and we have no intention of altering the film in any way,” the studio said in a statement. “We’re proud to have made a movie with such a positive and uplifting overall message that audiences throughout the U.S. have embraced. The filmmakers obviously struck a winning chord with critics and audiences alike, and we are already at work on the sequel.”
The scene in question in “Barbershop” involves a character played by Cedric the Entertainer who minimizes the efforts of civil rights champion Rosa Parks and uses profanity in describing Jackson and King.
The movie has been a box office success for MGM, topping the charts in its first two weekends and generating nearly $39 million in 10 days of release.