Ender’s Game Boycott is Misguided

News is spreading about a group calling for a boycott of Ender’s Game when it released in the theaters this November. The proposed boycott is in response to author Orson Scott Card‘s anti-gay comments and his participation on the board of the National Organization for Marriage. This boycott is misguided because it is not going to impact the target of their fury.

While I agree that a boycott is a great way to voice disapproval of comments or actions of an individual, this particular time it is misguided. This is an attempt to hit Mr. Card in his pocket book, but the author has already been paid for this film. If they had thought this out clearly before they made their announcement, the boycott organizers would have realized that film studios purchase the rights from the story’s author before they can even begin adapting the script and producing the film. Orson Scott Card was likely paid years ago.

Who, exactly, is this boycott going to harm, if it were successful? It’s not Mr. Card—unless he is concerned about the possible sequels to come from the other novels in his series. The studio backers—the people who have invested money into this film production—are the ones who would be affected by a successful boycott. Since we don’t have any public declarations about gay rights from any of them, this boycott is pretty pointless.

Some claim this proposed boycott is a message to the studios—don’t do business with a bigot. Well, it’s too late to send that message. They paid for the film rights to Ender’s Game, they have paid the actors, the filming is complete, and a release date has been set for November. I, for one, look forward to seeing the movie. The trailer looks amazing.

I already see a backlash starting because of this proposed boycott. Within the week, I foresee Mike Huckabee establishing a national “Let’s Go See Ender’s Game Day.” I am sure he will pull in Chik-fil-a as a sponsor, and they will sell popcorn chicken as refreshments. This proposed boycott has caused early interest in the film among people who weren’t previously aware of it.

I hope Mr. Card’s feelings about homosexuality are evolving, just like they are for many people as we come to better understand one another. One day he will hopefully realize that he has displayed intolerance similar to what his character DeAnne Fletcher in The Lost Boys despised. I have to paraphrase now, because I do not have a copy of the novel, but DeAnne recounts the intolerance many of her former neighbors displayed towards an African-American girl in her Utah community. She moves away with her family and hopes to never again live among people who could dislike somebody just because they were different in some way. For some reason, that little insignificant passage from the novel has lasted with me since the time I read it nearly 12 years ago.

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M. McMann

I am a writer, an artist, an athlete, a brother. I have the crazy dream of making my part of the world a better place. I like to do kind things in secret and observe the joy I bring into other people's lives. I can't stand seeing others being treated unjustly. I hate the direction our government is taking this country. Since when did taking care of those who can't take care of themselves become evil? Everybody deserves to be treated with dignity, and I think we all appreciate when someone else has offered to lift us up. I am your neighbor. I am Mystery McMann.

3 thoughts on “Ender’s Game Boycott is Misguided”

  1. While I don’t necessarily believe in the organized boycott, because as you said, it doesn’t get a person anywhere, I am choosing to skip this movie when it comes out in November. You’re right that Card has already been paid for the movie, however by going to the movie I am still helping to put that money into his pocket. The movie producers still have to make up for the money they paid him. While I know that they’re easily going to surpass the amount of money they gave to OSC, to me I can’t go in good conscience.

    I agree with you though, the idea of an organized boycott isn’t a smart move. Regardless of who is having a boycott and for what reason, they never are successful. That’s why I am not joining the official boycott and just going to skip this movie on moral grounds.

    1. Thank you for your comments. I see this one differently than the Chik-fil-a controversy of last summer. My patronage of that restaurant does, in a little way, affect the bottom line of the CEO who made those bigoted comments and financial contributions he has made to anti-gay organizations. I have not stepped in that fast food restaurant in over a year.

      My attendance at a showing of Ender’s Game, however, will not make any difference in OSC’s income from the film. That has already been determined. It only impacts the people who invested the money to make the film, and they may be the collateral damage in this battle. They didn’t make the comments, but they are now suffering the consequences. Attendance will, however, determine whether or not the studio will make the sequels in his book series. That’s where I have my issues. I hope and pray that OSC has a change of heart, but it seems like that will be a long way down the road.

  2. I can’t remember where I read it, but as a huge Card fan someone I know put a link across my inbox a while ago on the subject of Card’s views on the subject of gay rights. Reading the article I came to realize that, while he used to be very biased against the movement, he has, in fact, changed his views in recent years.
    I’m also very excited about this movie. I just hope it doesn’t turn out like Eragon did… though I don’t see how it can. I mean, look at the actors and previews!
    It. Looks. Amazing!

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