Django premiere pulled after mass shooting

2012-12-18 07:46

Los Angeles - A Hollywood premiere of notoriously violent director Quentin Tarantino's latest film Django Unchained was cancelled on Monday, the latest such response to the Connecticut school massacre.

A string of movies and TV shows have been pulled or postponed since Friday's shootings, while sporting events have held moments of silence and players have worn black armbands to honour the victims, 20 of whom were young children.

The Weinstein Company said that a premiere scheduled for Tuesday in Los Angeles of Django Unchained - which is due to open on Christmas Day in US theatres - had been called off.

'Out of honour and respect'

"Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, and in this time of national mourning we have decided to forgo our scheduled event," said a Weinstein Company spokesperson.

The studio will still hold a screening for cast and crew and their friends and families, industry daily Variety reported.

Tarantino is known for screen violence, in movies from 1992's Reservoir Dogs to 2009's Inglourious Basterds. In his new film a slave-turned-bounty hunter sets out to rescue his wife from a brutal plantation owner.

The move came after the weekend premiere of Tom Cruise's latest movie, Jack Reacher - about a homicide investigator probing a trained military sniper who shot five random victims - was postponed.

"Our hearts go out to all those who lost loved ones," said studio Paramount, adding that it took the action "out of honour and respect for the families of the victims whose lives were senselessly taken."

Fox cancelled a weekend red carpet event and after-party for Parental Guidance starring Bette Midler and Billy Crystal "in light of the horrific tragedy."

'Small gesture of solidarity'

The studio also replaced planned broadcasts Sunday of episodes of Family Guy and American Dad to avoid any insensitivities to the massacre.

A moment of silence was observed at National Football League (NFL) games across the country on Sunday to remember those killed in the normally peaceful town of Newtown, Connecticut.

While some events were cancelled because of content, others did not appear to be. PG-rated Parental Guidance got its parental warning for some rude humour, not for violence, according to the IMDb industry website.

Veteran crooner Barry Manilow postponed a planned Friday night show in Palm Desert, California until Sunday, saying on his website: "Perhaps this small gesture of solidarity will help support these families on this terrible day."

Celebrities were quick to join online expressions of shock and sympathy. Pop star Justin Bieber tweeted: "My prayers go out to all those suffering in this tragedy. it's just wrong. Everyone please pray for them."

"God have mercy!!!! No one deserves this! Praying for the families of the victims of the Connecticut shooting!! What a Christmas it will be," added singer Rihanna on the micro-blogging site.