‘Don’t mess with freedom’ say veterans attending Platteville’s ‘The Interview’ showing
A wide variety of viewers showed up for the Christmas Day opening
PLATTEVILLE, Wis. — A mostly older crowd, including a fair number of veterans, attended the Platteville showing of the controversial James Franco/Seth Rogen comedy “The Interview” came with a message: Don’t mess with freedom.
“Once you sabotage our country we’re going to kick back,” Platteville veteran Keith Kisher said. “This willhave the greatest exposure of any movie in the United States.”
“Anything I can do to these Commies, I’m going to go for it,” Army Vietnam veteran Don Mullen added.
Three hundred theaters, including Platteville’s Millennium Cinema, agreed to air the film about a plot to kill North Korean leader Kim Jong Un after Sony originally scrapped its Christmas Day release following computer hackings and North Korean threats.
Of about 80 attending the 4 p.m. Platteville showing on Sunday, many were not the stereotypical Franco-Rogen fans.
“Just to send the message this has to happen,” said Ken Seiler of Lancaster.
“You have to stand up for yourself. There’s no reason why we should– in this country, in this day and age– bow to anybody else that tells us this is not our right,” Platteville resident Edward Memby added.
“It seemed like my duty as a freedom-loving American to come and see ‘The Interview,’ said Bohden Neswiacheny, who is visiting family from South Florida.
Millennium Cinema Owner Duane Deyoung said the reaction surprised him and actually meant some early Internet sales, who sold about 20 tickets for the day’s first show.
“Those people in particular came in and thanked me for having the movie. And so I think those people might have some political inclinations.”
Those political inclinations are exactly why many Christmas moviegoers, who may not have chosen to originally watch ‘The Interview’ say they decided to spend their holiday with it.
“Love this country. Love the freedom. No one is going to take it away from us,” said Josephine Kischer, a naturalized citizen from Platteville .
“We just wanted to wish Kim Jong Un a merry Christmas,” said Barbra Snell, who drove more than an hour from Brooklyn to see the film.
Besides Brroklyn, moviegoers drove in from across southern Wisconsin including Lancaster, Potosi, Dodgeville and Mineral Point, to watch the film.
Deyoung says the movie accounted for about one-third of his Christmas ticket sales.