Adoption line in 'Juno' draws criticism

Feb. 13, 2008 at 11:46 AM
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LOS ANGELES, Feb. 13 (UPI) -- Jason Reitman, the Canadian director of the acclaimed big-screen comedy "Juno," is defending a line of the film's dialogue that some have found offensive.

The PG13-rated movie is about a sarcastic pregnant teen who, upon meeting a pair of prospective adoptive parents, says: "You shoulda gone to China. You know, 'cause I hear they give away babies like free iPods. You know, they pretty much just put them in those T-shirt guns and shoot them out at sporting events."

Numerous detractors have said online they think the joke is offensive, oversimplifies the adoption process in China and shouldn't be used in trailers and film clips at awards shows, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

"No one could be more sensitive to this idea than myself. My wife and daughter are Chinese, and my sister is adopted," Reitman told the Chronicle in an e-mail statement. "While I am connected to this on all levels, I have always felt that it is important that we find humor in which we are most sensitive. It is through comedy that we can begin conversation instead of hiding behind political correctness -- a wall that simply divides people and stifles communication."

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