Quote of the Day - Stephen Fry

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Submitted by Marcus on Thu, 2011-10-13 12:58


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Now I feel foolish!

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Wallace and Gromit makers Aardman axe leprosy joke

The makers of Wallace and Gromit have dropped a joke about leprosy from their latest film after being accused of laughing at those suffering from the disease.

"Aardman, the Oscar-winning makers of The Wrong Trousers, decided to cut the scene from The Pirates! — In An Adventure With Scientists after it was included in trailers that were distributed before its release in March.

It is the Bristol-based company’s first 3D feature and uses computer graphics to complement its usual stop-motion clay animation.

The scene showed the arrival of the Pirate Captain, voiced by Hugh Grant, on board a captive ship demanding gold. A crew member tells him: “Afraid we don’t have any gold old man, this is a leper-boat.” His arm then falls off, before he adds: “See.”

Campaigners lined up to criticise the joke, accusing Aardman of “laughing at the millions disabled by leprosy”. The criticism grew to such a level that the animators decided to re-edit the scene to stop the commotion sinking the swashbuckler before it hit the screens.

The Leprosy Relief Association Health in Action (LEPRA), a charity, expressed disbelief at the scene and claimed that audiences in India and Brazil, where leprosy was still a problem, had already complained...

The World Health Organisation also objected and Stephen Fry criticised the joke. The comedian, posting a message to his three million followers on Twitter, said: “Cheap joke Aardman, leprosy does not cause your arm to fall off.”

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