Well, it was about time. The school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut that occurred on Friday and, as the nation mourns the victims, the debates about violence in the media are just beginning.
The latest person to comment on this is actor Jamie Foxx, who, a bit ironically, stars in Django Unchained – Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming flick about slavery, which will feature quite a lot of explicit and violent scenes. While promoting the film on Saturday, the star braved the difficult topic, saying that Hollywood can no longer ignore the fact that on-screen violence influences people on some level.
"We cannot turn our back and say that violence in films or anything that we do doesn't have a sort of influence. It does," Fox said in an interview. Meanwhile, director Quentin Tarantino, who is known for his extremely violent and gory scenes, which are all part of his signature style, is once again struggling to defend his artistic freedom. Tarantino went on a bit of a tangent, explaining that he was tired of defending his films each time the nation was shocked by gun violence. He stated that “tragedies happen” and that blame should fall on those guilty of the crimes.
While Tarantino’s statement sounds overall a bit dismissive, there is no argument that TV and cinema have been the first to be blamed after nearly every instance of wanton violence in the US in the past decade. Once again, a tragedy has caused extremely polarized opinions, while the truth of it all probably lies somewhere in between. Django Unchained actress Kerry Washington expressed a more moderate view on the subject. “I do think that it's important when we have the opportunity to talk about violence and not just kind of have it as entertainment, but connect it to the wrongs, the injustices, the social ills,” said the star about the tragedy.