I'm not surprised

That new Darwin film, Creation (reviews here and here) doesn't look like it will get to my neighborhood theater — it hasn't got a US distributor, for familiar reasons.

A British film about Charles Darwin has failed to find a US distributor because his theory of evolution is too controversial for American audiences, according to its producer.

Creation, starring Briton Paul Bettany, details the naturalist's "struggle between faith and reason" as he wrote On the Origin of Species.

It depicts him as a man who loses faith in God after the death of his daughter, Annie, 10.

The film was chosen to open the Toronto Film Festival and has its British premiere today. It has been sold in almost every territory around the world, from Australia to Scandinavia.

However, US distributors turned down the film that will prove divisive in a country where, according to a Gallup poll taken in February, only 39 per cent of people believe in the theory of evolution.

Movieguide.org, an influential site that reviews films from a Christian perspective, described Darwin as the father of eugenics and denounced him as "a racist, a bigot and an 1800s naturalist whose legacy is mass murder". His "half-baked theory" influenced Adolf Hitler and led to "atrocities, crimes against humanity, cloning and genetic engineering", the site stated.

Although, to be fair, this is only part of the story. One reason it probably isn't getting picked up is that it isn't a blockbuster story — it's a small film with a personal story. That's not to say it's a bad movie, but it's not a Michael Bay noisemaker with car chases and explosions, or giant robots, or a remake of a 1970s cheesy TV show. That makes it a tougher sell.

Also, while it's going to generate a little controversy from the know-nothing brigades, it's not a movie that embraces the controversy and makes a lot of PR waves. I suspect it's falling into the valley of the dead movies, where it's got just enough negative vibe to turn away a segment (a small, stupid segment, of course, but theaters don't care about the IQ of the people buying popcorn) of the population, but not enough shock value to make it a must-see movie for the controversy alone.

More like this

A British film about Charles Darwin has failed to find a US distributor because his theory of evolution is too controversial for American audiences, according to its producer: "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…
Yesterday, I read something in international news that made me so mad I needed to share it with you: That's right; my home country, the United States, will not distribute this film. There was no problem for the movie Expelled, a poorly argued anti-evolution flop that grossed just $7,598,071…
From the NCSE: Three historians of science are unhappy about their treatment in a creationist movie about Darwin, as they explain in a note in the July 2009 Newsletter of the History of Science Society. Peter Bowler, Janet Browne, and Sandra Herbert write, "We have recently been featured in a…
Last month everyone was all a-twitter about the big screen Charles Darwin biopic, Creation. The film, based upon the biography Annie's Box, was released in England with great fanfare, but whether it would come to the United States was another question altogether. A U.S. distributor was hard to come…