By Michael Gold
The Baltimore Sun
2:07 PM EDT, July 9, 2013
Orson Scott Card must have a bad case of deja vu.
Earlier this year, the science fiction author found himself at the center of controversy when his views on same-sex marriage led to a boycott and eventual delay of a Superman comic he penned.
Now, four months later, an LGBT group has proposed a boycott of 'Ender's Game', the science-fiction film based on Card's much-loved 1985 novel.
As part of a campaign dubbed "Skip Ender's Game," gay geek group Geeks OUT is asking moviegoers to skip the theater and save their money due to Card's anti-gay activism.
"However much you may have admired his books," the group writes, "keep your money out of Orson Scott Card's pocket.
More specifically, Geeks OUT points to Card's work with the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage and a 1990 essay in which he supports laws that "discourage people from engaging in homosexual practices."
While Geeks OUT's actual boycott is months away -- 'Ender's Game' won't be released until November -- the group has gathered enough steam that Card released a statement July 8 asking same-sex marriage advocates to show their "tolerance" for his intolerant views. Because, he writes, gay marriage is a "moot" issue.
And clearly, Card's right, since all 50 states legally recognize same-sex marriages and not one lawmaker wants to circumvent the Supreme Court's decision on the Defense of Marriage Act.
Politics aside, what remains to be seen is whether Geeks OUT's boycott will have any effect. While outcry over Orson Scott Card's "Adventures of Superman" issue led to the comic's cancellation, the studios behind 'Ender's Game' are unlikely to back out from their six-figure investment. Plus, with four months to go until 'Ender's Game' hits the silver screen, Skip Ender's Game would have to sustain quite a bit of momentum to make a dent in box office returns.
Besides, as last year's boycott of Chick-fil-A proved, movements like these sometimes spark a backlash that flies in the face of the boycott's intent. With Chick-fil-A, that resulted in one day of long drive-thru lines. In movie parlance, that level of support would translate to huge sales on opening weekend, when studios reap most of the box office take.
So what do you think? Should 'Ender's Game' be boycotted due to its writer's anti-gay politics? And are boycotts like this one even effective?
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