As the Tom Hanks-Sandra Bullock drama Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close hits theaters today, New Yorkers are voicing their displeasure over the decision by both Warner Bros. and the MTA to air the movie’s commercials in digital subway ads in New York City. Most notably, the commercials are airing on a digital panel at a subway station right next to Ground Zero.
The film is about a young boy whose father (Hanks) dies in the attacks on the World Trade Center and his subsequent search for the answers to life’s questions, and so the ads feature footage of the attacks and smoke billowing from the towers. You know, I could see how that might upset some people in New York City.
“Everybody’s trying to make money off 9/11,” said Bill Doyle, whose son, Joseph, was killed in the north tower.
“A lot of families got upset. Why couldn’t they warn us about this? I don’t think people really realized that these people are really still stressed.”
A Warner Bros. spokesman, Paul McGuire, said the movie company would pull the ads.
“It was never our intention to cause any distress,” McGuire said. “As a result, we will make best efforts to pull the material from pertinent locations.”
(Via the New York Post)
Common sense is a rare treasure these days. I mean, I understand that you want to be able to convey to people that you’ve made a dramatic film that has 9/11 as a backdrop (oh how I miss the Cold War) and you need to show the horrific footage to really hammer home your point.
But I also want to believe that at some point during the video editing process for the TV ads, someone looked up and said, “Hey, I just had a thought – this might upset people.” Then again, I also assume another person just responded, “Nah, people still like Tom Hanks.”