Sony Pictures issued an apology after a controversial food allergy scene in the newest film “Peter Rabbit,” angered social media users.
The film that sits at second in the box office features a scene where Peter Rabbit and his friends attack the villain of the story, Mr. McGregor. McGregor is pelted with blackberries in a fun, comical scene. However, the audience later learns that McGregor is actually allergic to the berry and begins to choke. After struggling, he eventually stabs himself with an EpiPen.
Carla Jones, CEO of the charity organization Allergy UK, voiced her opinion about the scene in an interview with Telegraph.
“Anaphylaxis can and does kill,” Jones said. “Mocking allergic disease shows a complete lack of understanding of the seriousness of food allergy.”
A petition on Change.org is calling for an apology from Sony Pictures. The petition labeled the abrasive scene as depicting “food bullying.” The online petition currently has over 10,000 signatures.
Meanwhile, the hashtag #boycottpeterrabbit has become a trending topic on Twitter. Users are expressing their disgust of the movie’s insensitive scene.
– The scene will make you want to vomit, @FoodAllergyBuzz. Sickened @SonyPictures thought that promoting food allergy bullying by Peter and friends would be okay in any movie, no less a children’s movie. Certainly no “humor” in the situation. #BoycottPeterRabbit
— Tom Murray (@thomascmurray) February 10, 2018
As a mother of a toddler allergic to several foods, I am disgusted that Sony would make a joke out of flicking an allergen at a food allergic individual. Doing so is felony aggravated assault! What kind of message does that scene send to kids?! #boycottpeterrabbit
— hydrogirl71 (@hydrogirl71) February 10, 2018
Sony Pictures apologized for the scene in an interview with the New York Times.
“Food allergies are a serious issue” the company representative said. “We sincerely regret not being more aware and sensitive to this issue, and we truly apologize.”
Despite the apology, Jones stated she would be in contact with Sony’s production company and hopes to convince the company to withdraw the film from the box office.
As of now, the movie is still showing in theaters across the Dallas area, including Highland Park Village Theatre and AMC NorthPark 15.