Filmmakers say a Toronto cinema has cancelled a weeklong screening of their documentary about Jordan Peterson, the controversial psychology professor known for opposing political correctness and refusing to use preferred gender pronouns.Director Patricia Marcoccia said the film, The Rise of Jordan Peterson, was scheduled for a theatrical run at the Carlton Cinema beginning in late September. Marcoccia said the theatre was apologetic but cancelled the screening because some employees were uncomfortable with it.A manager at Carlton Cinema could not confirm if the booking process had been complete, but the manager did confirm that the film is not currently on the booking calendar. The cinema’s parent company, Imagine Cinemas, did not respond to an immediate request for comment.Peterson, a University of Toronto professor and author, is a frequent contributor to the National Post. He was not available for comment, but his 27-year-old daughter, Mikhaila Peterson, said she had not heard about the cancellation before being asked.“I’m not particularly surprised,” she said. “It’s odd that people still think shutting films and other public events down is a good idea. If people shut them down in the physical world, they’ll just gain more momentum online.”Story continues belowThis advertisement has not loaded yet,but your article continues below.From the parts of the film she has seen, she said it’s a fair representation of both sides of the controversy. She also said there haven’t been protests against her father’s ideas in many months.“I think people have kind of gotten over the drama associated with dad,” she said. Jordan Peterson: The deepfake artists must be stopped before we no longer know what’s real Jordan Peterson: When the left goes too far — the dangerous doctrine of equity Jordan Peterson: It’s ideology vs. science in psychology’s war on boys and men The film is a longer, theatrical version of Marcoccia’s documentary, “Shut Him Down,” which aired on CBC in 2018. She started filming Peterson in 2015 before he became known around the world, and she followed him through the release of his viral videos about political correctness. The film includes interviews with Peterson’s wife, Tammy, and footage of the professor at home and on the University of Toronto campus, where students both laud him and shout “shame.”The documentary is also partly biographical, recounting Peterson’s first speech when he ran for vice president of the NDP in Alberta and showing footage of Peterson’s years teaching at Harvard. Marcoccia said the film was largely funded by the CBC, while it also received funding from the film’s worldwide distributors.“I don’t think any theatre is obligated to screen our film,” said Marcoccia, “but at the same time it’s disappointing when you’re a filmmaker and you’re working on a film for so long … and then it becomes cancelled, and it’s not even based on the content of the film or the approach or treatment of the film, but it’s just the subject matter in and of itself.”Critics of the professor say he tries to persuade people of archaic and patriarchal ideas. Sarah Wood, a blogger and outspoken critic of Peterson, says she does not see a problem with the film being screened.“People just need to know they’re not witnessing the second coming of Christ, but rather a misogynistic conman taking their money,” Wood said in an email to the National Post.Maziar Ghaderi, a producer of the film and Marcoccia’s husband, said the cancellation of the screening emphasizes that many curators in the film industry are looking for movies that relate to social justice.“Ours is an honest film,” Ghaderi said. “It’s not a fluff piece of Jordan. It’s also not a hit piece. It’s really just, what was it like for us to be there with the camera turned on?”The documentary premiers in Toronto on Sept. 26 at the Cineplex theatre near Dundas Square.
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