On August 15, 2017, Executive Producers of “Architects of Denial”, Montel Williams and Dean Cain released a statement in regards to Caruso Affiliated’s official rejection of advertisement space to the documentary film. Read the letter below.
MONTEL WILLIAMS AND DEAN CAIN REACT TO THE REJECTION OF AD FOR DOCUMENTARY EXPOSING ARMENIAN GENOCIDE
Last year, we decided to make a full-length documentary on the horror of the Armenian Genocide and we travelled to Armenia in hopes of telling a story that for far too long far too many have tried to sweep under the proverbial rug of history. Like any producers, we sought to advertise our film, and much to our surprise, our advertisement was rejected.
One of the places we sought to purchase a billboard was the Americana at Brand shopping mall, owned by Caruso Holdings, in Glendale, California, home to the largest population of people of Armenian origin outside of Armenia. We were stunned to be told verbally, and then officially in writing yesterday, that our ad was rejected for being “too political.”
Architects of Denial tells the story of a horror too often denied for the sake of political expediency. It’s the story of the 20th century’s first genocide, the Armenian genocide of 1915. Since the end of World War II, every civilized nation on earth has adhered to the principle of “never again” and that’s why we made this film – because we know if we allow this genocide to be forgotten, we run the risk of repeating the evils of humanity’s collective past.
As the Executive Producers, we are confused and saddened by Caruso’s decision (that our film was “too political”) but more than anything, we regret that a business happy to take the hard-earned money of Glendale’s large Armenian population is unwilling to stand up for their own customers.
Our ad is effectively a movie poster, and we fail to see how it is political and this is bigger than our film. This is about whether we’re willing to be participants in whitewashing history – that’s what Caruso’s decision is – make no mistake about it – it’s about enabling revisionist history related to the massacre of 1.5 million people.
The seriousness of this issue cannot and should not be understated. This is no longer about our movie or an advertisement. This is about vindicating the dignity of the victims and the survivors of a genocide.
This is about who we are as human beings and whether we accept the adage that history forgotten (or silenced) is doomed to repeat itself. Accordingly, today we’re calling on the residents of Glendale as well as the greater Angelino community to boycott the Americana at Brand shopping mall until it and its corporate owners apologize to the Armenian community.
CONTACT FOR MONTEL WILLIAMS & DEAN CAIN
Jonathan Franks LUCID Public Relations firstname.lastname@example.org