The Scopes Monkey Trial in 1926 challenged a state law that made it illegal to teach evolution in public schools. But now, evolution is being challenged in a much more insidious way.
A new movie about Charles Darwin, from BBC Films and the UK Film Council is being released this weekend, and although it was directed by oscar-winner Jeremy Thomas (The Last Emperor and Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence), and has received rave reviews, it has been unable to find a US distributor. No US distributor will touch it because evolution is too controversial. The movie has had no problems finding distributors in pretty much every other country in the world, and has even been picked to open the Toronto Film Festival (one of the most prestigious in the world).
But not here. According to Thomas:
The film has no distributor in America. It has got a deal everywhere else in the world but in the US, and it’s because of what the film is about. People have been saying this is the best film they’ve seen all year, yet nobody in the US has picked it up.
The film is being widely attacked on US Christian websites, despite the fact that it is actually fairly even handed. Most of the attacks are against evolution (not the film itself) with one site calling evolution “a silly theory with a serious lack of evidence to support it despite over a century of trying.” Surveys have shown that only 39% of Americans believe in the theory of evolution.