In the wake of the devastating earthquake and tsunami that have ravaged parts of Japan, Clint Eastwood's afterlife drama "Hereafter" has been pulled from theaters in the country. The film, which stars Matt Damon as a former psychic, features a terrifying scene that depicts the 2004 tsunami in Indonesia.
The Associated Press reported on Monday (March 14) that Warner Entertainment Japan Inc. official Satoru Otani said theaters will no longer screen the film, which was initially slated to play until late March. "Hereafter" opened in about 180 theaters in Japan last month. Otani concluded that the tsunami scene in the film was "not appropriate" for moviegoers during this sensitive time.
During its run in the U.S., the movie earned roughly $32.7 million at the box office and went on to earn a 2011 Oscar nod for Best Visual Effects. It's set for a DVD/Blu-ray Stateside release on Tuesday.
But "Hereafter" is not the only film being shelved in the days and weeks following the tragedy. Variety reports that director Xiaogang Feng and Japanese-based film company Shochiku have opted to delay the release of "Aftershock."
The film, originally slated to hit theaters nationwide on March 25, is about the Great Tangshan Earthquake of 1976. Shochiku said in a statement, "In view of the devastation caused by the earthquake and out of consideration for the victims and their families ... we are delaying the release of 'Aftershock.'
Additionally, the Anthony Hopkins exorcism-chiller "The Rite" will also be put on hold in Japan. Warner explained in a statement, "We have decided that the content of film is not appropriate given Japan's current situation." Moreover, the horror film, which was to arrive in Japanese theaters on March 19, may not have made its release date given the gasoline shortages caused by the natural disasters.
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Do you think it's wise to pull these films in response to the tragedy in Japan? Share your thoughts in the comments.