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Geeks Out activists call for ‘Ender’s Game’ boycott over author’s anti-LGBT views

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US group Geeks Out launches ‘Skip Ender’s Game’ website, citing novelist Orson Scott Card’s opposition to gay marriage

A US activist group has called for a boycott of forthcoming science fiction epic Ender’s Game in protest at the anti-gay views of author Orson Scott Card, who wrote its source novel.

Geeks Out has launched a website encouraging filmgoers to avoid spending their money on the movie, which stars Asa Butterfield, Abigail Breslin, Hailee Steinfeld and Harrison Ford. Card, a practising member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has been vocal in opposition to gay rights – and same-sex marriage in particular – for a number of years.

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“Do not buy a ticket at the theatre, do not purchase the DVD, do not watch it on-demand. Ignore all merchandise and toys. However much you may have admired his books, keep your money out of Orson Scott Card’s pockets,” says the group on its “Skip Ender’s Game” website. “By pledging to skip Ender’s Game, we can send a clear and serious message to Card and those that do business with his brand of anti-gay activism – whatever he’s selling, we’re not buying. The queer geek community will not subsidise his fearmongering and religious bullying. We will not pay him to demean, insult and oppress us.”

Card has issued a statement in response to the Geeks Out boycott, suggesting that recent legal rulings in the US make his opinions moot.

“Ender’s Game is set more than a century in the future and has nothing to do with political issues that did not exist when the book was written in 1984,” he writes. “With the recent Supreme Court ruling, the gay marriage issue becomes moot. The full faith and credit clause of the constitution will, sooner or later, give legal force in every state to any marriage contract recognised by any other state. Now it will be interesting to see whether the victorious proponents of gay marriage will show tolerance toward those who disagreed with them when the issue was still in dispute.”

The Geeks Out boycott is particularly pertinent because Ender’s Game is due to be showcased at San Diego’s annual fan convention Comic-Con later this month, though Card himself is unlikely to attend.

Directed and adapted by Gavin Hood, the film will star Butterfield as Andrew “Ender” Wiggin, a gifted child who is sent to a military school in space to prepare for an alien invasion. It hits UK cinemas on 25 October, Australian cinemas on 31 October and US cinemas a day later.

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guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media 2013

[Image credit: Screenshot from “Ender’s Game” trailer]

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