Last week, leading UK cinemas revealed that they had banned an advert by the Church of England, featuring the Lord’s Prayer, citing their fears that it would be deemed offensive by some viewers in its planned spot before the new ‘Star Wars’ film.
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Now ‘Star Wars’ actress Carrie Fisher has entered the debacle, telling the Mail on Sunday anyone offended by such an ad “should get a life”.
The forthright star and bestselling author, due to reprise her iconic role of Princess Leia in the forthcoming ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’, says: “I have no idea why they would do that. People should get a life. I don’t think it’s offensive to have a ‘power of prayer’ advert before Star Wars”.
The actress described the ad, due to run for 60 seconds, as being similar to placing a Gideon Bible in a hotel bedroom.
“If the theatre is like a hotel room, then they have every right to put up a power of prayer advert. It’s advertising, so it has to be advertisers that are objecting.”
Digital Cinema Media (DCM), the representative of major cinema chains including Odeon, Cineworld and Vue, has explained it isn’t prepared to feature any material "that is political or religious in nature as it carried the risk of upsetting, or offending, audiences”. DCM has a policy of avoiding “advertising which wholly or partly advertises any religion, faith or equivalent systems of belief (including any absence of belief) or any part of any religion, faith or such equivalent systems of belief”.
The highly-anticipated film will be in UK cinemas from 17 December, arriving in the US the following day. Industry observers are already predicting that the film may prove the first to hit a $1billion opening-weekend bonanza at the box office, with JJ Abrams’ reboot preemptively being credited for helping bring the film industry its biggest ever year.
HuffPostUK has spoken to two actors involved in the film, Oscar Isaac and Simon Pegg. Oscar told us earlier in the year that he's not terrified by any of the hype surrounding the new film.
“The sets are everything you can imagine, there are the returning characters, but people will also be astonished by the care and love that JJ has paid to this project. That’s what I can’t wait for them to spot.”
Meanwhile, Simon Pegg said simply, "I’ve seen loads of it, and it’s going to be extraordinary." (Read his full interview here)