Violent programs canceled, delayed after Newtown shooting

Tuesday , December 18, 2012 - 10:26 AM

Edmund Lee

NEW YORK - Movie studios and television programmers have postponed or canceled violent films and TV shows after a shooting left 20 children and six adults dead in a Connecticut elementary school last week.

Viacom Inc.’s Paramount studios delayed the premiere of “Jack Reacher,” an action-thriller based on the Lee Child novels starring Tom Cruise that was scheduled for Dec. 15, the day after the murders. Separately, Discovery Communications Inc. canceled the new season of “American Guns,” a reality-based serial about a family of gunmakers, Fox News reported.

The killings by a single gunman armed with two handguns and a semi-automatic rifle have reignited debates over the need for gun control and violence in Hollywood’s movies. President Barack Obama said he would “use whatever power this office holds” to prevent further tragedies.

“Due to the terrible tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, and out of honor and respect for the families of the victims whose lives were senselessly taken, we are postponing tomorrow’s Pittsburgh premiere of ’Jack Reacher,’” Paramount said in an e- mailed statement on Dec. 14. “Our hearts go out to all those who lost loved ones.”

Michelle Russo, a spokeswoman for Discovery, didn’t respond to requests for comment.

CBS Corp.’s Showtime cable channel acknowledged the Connecticut killings - the second-most fatal mass shooting in the U.S. - before recent airings of “Dexter,” a show about a serial killer, and “Homeland,” a popular series about domestic terrorism.

“In light of the tragedy that has occurred in Connecticut, the following program contains images that may be disturbing. Viewer discretion is advised,’ the network broadcast before the shows.



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