The film has distanced itself from the notoriously homophobic author who has announced 'Ender's Game' sequels.
Orson Scott Card has announced that he plans to write more books in the Ender's Game series after the renewed interest in his work that the upcoming action movie adaptation has brought. The author of many successful sci-fi novels, Card is known for his skill in envisaging a futuristic Earth with clever new technology.
Asa Butterfield Plays The Titular Ender.
Adapted by director Gavin Hood, the movie has debuted on top in the US, having raked in $28 million in its opening weekend. Set 70 years after the invasion of an alien race known as the Formics, the movie sees Asa Butterfield plays Ender Wiggin who is recruited by the International Fleet to join the Battle School in outer space due to his skill for logic and strategy. Ender is unaware of how much hope is being put on him to be Earth's hero and his ability to make the right choice in a difficult decision leaves him with a sense of bitter self-loathing.
Though Ender's Game was first published in 1985, Card has promised more of the same, revealing "It's for a YA audience. It's about what happens to Battle School after the International Fleet loses its purpose of war," reports the LA Times. However, many have called for the movie to be boycotted after the author's personal views came to light, overshadowing his work.
The problem lies in that Card is notoriously outspoken homophobe, having famously written a 2004 essay that claimed that homosexuality was the product of childhood molestation. He has also gone on record threatening to bring down the government if it passed a law "redefining marriage."
Fans of both the novel and the movie have been divided by the call to boycott, as it is reported that Card received his royalties when the movie rights to his novel were purchased a decade ago. Furthermore, boycotting the movie could have a negative effect upon the many talented actors and members of the production team that the film has recruited. The film companies Summit and Lionsgate are LGBT friendly, as is the cast and crew, with reported funds being donated to charities to offset the author's strongly controversial views.
Boycotting The Movie Would Affect Talented Actors, Such As Abigail Breslin, Over Card.
On the other hand, others argue that going to see the movie is condoning the author's bigoted viewpoints, regardless of Card being absent from all promotional events in the run up to the film's release. Is it possible to celebrate the artist from the artwork whilst still condemning homophobia?
Several gay rights organisations have proposed a solution for fans anxious that they want to see the film but don't want to condone Card's beliefs. It has been suggested that for every cinema ticket purchased, the viewer could donate to a charity that campaigns for gay rights as a sort of moral carbon offsetting.
Card certainly isn't the first creator of great art or literature to have vastly outdated and hurtful views, and he surely won't be the last. Unfortunately, Card is one of the greatest sci-fi writers of all time and has created a much-loved literary classic with Ender's Game. However, the novel's ultimate moral message is based in love and understanding: two virtues that its author could do with a few injection of. Even Ender's eventual realisation that the invading aliens aren't as bad as everyone first thought smacks of hypocrisy where the author's own beliefs are concerned.
The Cast & Crew Are Resolute In Their Condemnation Of Homophobia.
For the generations of children who have picked up Ender's Game since the eighties, the revelation that their favourite author doesn't practise what he preaches could be an unsettling one. However, the story is filled with messages of acceptance and bravery and it will be these that readers, regardless of their sexual orientation, will take away and not the unsavoury standpoints of Card.
So don't feel guilty for heading to the movies this November to watch the teen action movie: the very fact that we're having this debate is progress for those struggling in a vastly LGBT unfriendly world and shows the Orson Scott-Card types in society that their views are no longer welcome. Orson predicted many accurate things about the future when he began writing; he didn't predict this.