Jim Carrey, the Canadian-born star of The Truman Show, The Mask, and Dumb and Dumber, says he can no longer support his latest movie because it is too violent – even though he had no trouble signing up for it, performing in it and getting paid for it.
Carrey, who has a prominent role in Kick-Ass 2 and is featured heavily in publicity for the movie, said he had a change of heart after the Sandy Hook massacre, in which 20 first-grade elementary students, along with six school staff, were murdered by a deranged teenager armed with semi-automatic weapons last December in Newtown, Conn.
"I did Kickass a month b4 Sandy Hook and now in all good conscience I cannot support that level of violence," he wrote in a tweet.
"My apologies to others involve with the film," he added in a second tweet. "I am not ashamed of it but recent events have caused a change in my heart."
Kick-Ass and Kick-Ass 2 follow the ultraviolent adventures of Hit-Girl, a young vigilante capable of decapitating, eviscerating and mutilating a roomful of grown men when required. Both films contain graphic scenes of violence involving children.
Carrey plays Colonel Stars and Stripes, a vigilante with a heart of gold who beats criminals to death with an axe handle and lets his dog eat their genitals. According to numerous sources, Carrey "loved" the first Kick-Ass movie and was eager to sign up for a role in the sequel.
Mark Millar, who wrote the comic books on which the movies are based, and who also executive produced both films, said on his blog that he was "baffled" by Carrey's sudden change of heart.
"… Nothing seen in this picture wasn't in the screenplay eighteen months ago," Millar wrote. "Yes, the body-count is very high, but a movie called Kick-Ass 2 really has to do what it says on the tin. A sequel to the picture that gave us HIT-GIRL was always going to have some blood on the floor and this should have been no shock to a guy who enjoyed the first movie so much …"
The social media response for Carrey's tweets has ranged from full-on support for his stand against violence to accusations of hypocrisy. Some of his critics point out that Carrey may have filmed Kick-Ass 2 before the Sandy Hook killings, but production (in Mississauga, Ont.) took place after the Aurora, Colo., mass shooting in a movie theatre that killed 12 and injured 58, and any number of other mass gun atrocities in the United States.
"Donate your salary from that movie to some charitable cause," one person tweeted.