Guy Benson on Universal Studios pulling ads for 'The Hunt': Right thing to do in this moment
Townhall political editor Guy Benson said Universal Studios made the right call by pulling ads for their upcoming film "The Hunt," which depicts wealthy liberal elites physically hunting down "deplorables" with deadly weapons for sport.
Universal made the last-minute decision following the shootings in El Paso and Dayton, fearing backlash from the public. The film was initially billed as a satire.
"I think at the very least, it's the right thing to pull the marketing, or at least hit the pause button on promoting this film," Benson said on "America's Newsroom" Thursday.
"I think the country's in a pretty raw place. We had dozens of people shot, many of them killed over the last couple days... so to have a movie, even though it's satire, that depicts Americans hunting and killing Americans, I think that's maybe not an image that a lot of people want to see at the moment."
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Benson said the country should be cautious with censoring things like movies and media simply because they make certain audiences uncomfortable, and claimed he's not in favor of shutting down the movie entirely.
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"You have to think about this within the context of the news cycle. This is satire. I'm not someone who supports trying to ban movies or call for movies to be pulled completely because they depict things that are very uncomfortable or even rather quite offensive," he said.
"This is how satire works sometimes, even though it's very dark. I just think when you're marketing a movie like that, in this moment, given what happened, you're going to really offend a lot of people."
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Benson also said Americans are weary of over-the-top violence and made a veiled satirical reference to Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, and his release of certain Trump donor names to the public.
"Americans don’t want to turn on their televisions, especially right now, and see trailers for a movie again that shows a certain group of people being hunted down and shot by other people. Even if it's satire," he said.
"I think that there is a sensitivity that the studio needs to have when it comes to promoting the film, and also I don’t know if it's already finished yet, but if they want to add sort of a ripped from the headlines twist to the movie, perhaps they can write in a character of a Democratic congressman releasing a list of deplorables to find around the country to be hunted, perhaps."
“The Hunt” is scheduled to be released on Sept. 27.