Cinema pulls screening of controversial anti-vaccine film

  • Documentary Vaxxed is directed by Andrew Wakefield, who sparked MMR scare
  • Discredited research claimed there was link between MMR vaccine and autism
  • There were plans to show his film at the Curzon Cinema in Soho on February 14 

Documentary film Vaxxed is directed by Andrew Wakefield, who was struck off for his discredited researched on a link between the MMR vaccine and autism 

A screening of an anti-vaccination film directed by the disgraced doctor who sparked an MMR scare has been pulled from a London cinema following an outcry from scientists.

Documentary film Vaxxed is directed by Andrew Wakefield, who was struck off for his discredited research suggesting there was a link between the MMR vaccine and autism.

The film, which has been supported by actor Robert De Niro, had been scheduled to be shown at the Curzon Cinema in Soho on February 14.

However, the cinema has now decided to pull the film following a backlash.

Dr Adam Rutherford, who has made a BBC documentary on the MMR scare, said: 'Wakefield is a dangerous fraud, and his message and work literally threatens the health of our children.'

He thanked the cinema for their decision to pull the screening of the film.  

Dr David Robert Grimes, from Oxford University, told The Times: 'Giving this view a platform is in itself unethical. It gives the impression there is a debate where there really isn't.'

He added: '[Curzon's] decision is really commendable. They've done the right thing, taken a public health and ethical stance - in just the same way you would not show a neo-Nazi film, you should not show this.' 

Vaxxed: From Cover-up To Catastrophe claims there has been a cover-up by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention over the purported link between MMR vaccine and autism.
 The film was dropped from the Tribeca Film Festival in New York in April last year. But Robert De Niro insisted that 'the movie is something that people should see'

The film was dropped from the Tribeca Film Festival in New York in April last year. But Robert De Niro insisted that 'the movie is something that people should see'

 Vaxxed had been scheduled to be shown at the Curzon Cinema in Soho on February 14

Vaxxed had been scheduled to be shown at the Curzon Cinema in Soho on February 14

The film was dropped from the Tribeca Film Festival, founded by De Niro, in New York in April last year.

At the time, the actor said he did not want the backlash against the film to affect the festival - but insisted that 'the movie is something that people should see.' 

A TIMELINE OF THE MMR ROW

1998: Dr Wakefield's paper on possible link between bowel disease and autism is published in The Lancet

2001: The doctor is forced out of his job at London's Royal Free Hospital over allegations reserach was flawed; goes to work in the U.S.

2004: He is accused of secretly being paid by solicitors acting for parents who believed their children had been harmed by the MMR vaccination. 

Chief Medical Officer Professor Sir Liam Donaldson accuses Dr Wakefield of 'mixing spin and science'

2006: General Medical Council (GMC) announces Dr Wakefield is under investigation for alleged misconduct

2010: Wakefield is struck off by the GMC

De Niro told The Today Show: 'All I wanted is for the movie to be seen and people can make up their own judgement'.  

Wakefield published his study linking MMR to autism in The Lancet in 1998, sparking a scare that saw vaccination rates drop dramatically across the country.

He was struck off the UK medical register in 2010 after the claims were found to be 'utterly false' and that he had acted 'dishonestly and irresponsibly'.

A spokesman for Curzon Cinemas said: 'All private hires are unaffiliated with the Curzon brand or any of our venues. 

'In light of the responses we have received from members of the public, we have decided to cancel the private hire contract and pull the film from our venue. 

'We do not wish to profit from a film that has demonstrably caused great distress.' 

 
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By World Staff Writer 01/27/2017 04:32:00