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Thomas_True
Mar 24 2005
Some IMAX theaters pass on volcano film

The Associated Press

CHARLESTON - The IMAX theater in Charleston and several others in the South have passed on showing a science film on volcanoes because of concerns it might offend those with fundamental religious beliefs.

"We've got to pick a film that's going to sell in our area. If it's not going to sell, we're not going to take it," said Lisa Buzzelli, director of the Charleston IMAX theater. "Many people here believe in creationism, not evolution."

Buzzelli said that although the Charleston theater doesn't rule out showing "Volcanoes of the Deep Sea" in the future, she considers people's religious views when showing films.

The film makes a connection between human DNA and microbes inside undersea volcanoes. Buzzelli said the handling of evolution was considered in her decision.

IMAX theaters in Texas, Georgia and the Carolinas have declined to show the film, said Pietro Serapiglia, who handles distribution for Stephen Low, the film's director and producer, who is from Montreal.

"I find it's only in the South," Serapiglia said.

Some people worry that screening out such films will discourage filmmakers from making others in the future.

"It's going to restrain the creative approach by directors who refer to evolution," said Joe DeAmicis, vice president for marketing at the California Science Center in Los Angeles and a former director of an IMAX theater. "References to evolution will be dropped."

The IMAX Theatre in Myrtle Beach decided against showing the film. Theater Director Jerry Lennard wouldn't comment.

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