When some government officials in Canada learned that a federal institution bowed to demands to cancel a documentary film about the dangers of an atomic Iran, the officials went nuclear.
James Moore, the heritage minister in Canada, told Library and Archives of Canada (LAC) to show “Iranium,” despite threats of violence leveled at the institution from those angered with the film.
“The principle of free speech is one of the cornerstones of our democracy,” Moore’s office said in a statement. “Minister Moore took action as soon as he heard that the film was cancelled."
In turn, LAC announced it will offer the viewing of the documentary film at a later date in February.
Moore indicated that the appropriate steps will be taken to ensure security.
“This tells me that Tehran does not decide what movie is shown in Ottawa,” Alex Traiman, the director of the film told FoxNews.com. “I’m very impressed with Minister Moore and all the other people that went psycho over this protest.”
The film was supposed to be previewed at Library and Archives, a federal crown agency, on Tuesday. But the institution received a letter from the Iranian embassy asking that the film not be shown, apparently because it puts the nuclear program in a poor light.
The institution decided to go forward with the screening until threatening phone calls started pouring in. After two suspicious letters arrived the day of the filming, the institution said it would not show the documentary and closed the auditorium.
When government officials caught wind of the cancellation, they responded quickly.
The National Post reported Immigration Minister Jason Kenney posting on Twitter: “The cancellation of tonight’s screening of "Iranium" is outrageous.”
Moore also announced his dismay on Twitter, according to the paper, saying: “I am disappointed that Library & Archives Canada chose not to show the film tonight due to threats of violence.”
Moore went on to say, “The Iranian Embassy will not dictate to the Government of Canada which films will or will not be shown in Canada.”
"Iranium" has only had a few screenings so far in the United States. Its premiere was scheduled to take place Feb. 8 simultaneously at several American cities, according to The National Post.