FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 27, 2017 – At a time when medical professionals, elected officials, and the general public around the world have begun important conversations about how to make vaccines safe for all, it is questionable as to why misinformed people would put highly inappropriate pressure on theaters and other venues to suppress public forums where these ideas are being discussed. “Vaxxed,” which at its core, is about a whistleblower from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, who revealed that the CDC, the agency responsible for governing our health, concealed, and destroyed data on their 2004 study that showed a causal association between the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine and autism.
The film is not “anti-vaccine” and only calls for unbiased studies on the MMR (Measles-Mumps and Rubella) to be conducted. Predictably, there are some people and institutions that will be against unbiased vaccine safety studies, namely those who are funded by the pharmaceutical industry. It seems that asking for safe vaccines is too much of a threat to those who profit.
With a worldwide network of activists from the health freedom movement, we will continue to move forward with showing the film in the U.S., the U.K. and worldwide, continuing the dialog about vaccine safety across the globe.
Vaccine safety activist organizations and whistleblowers in the U.K. and Europe including the European Forum for Vaccine Vigilance (EFFV/UK), Info Vaccin Prevenar (France) and Mrs Senta Depuydt (Belgium) consider the movie and the Vaxxed tour in the U.S. as an essential document to support open vaccine discussion and have been working with the filmmakers and the film’s distributor, Cinema Libre Studio to further this discourse.
“To our understanding, the commercial premiere of the film in the U.K. was derailed by a few persistent individuals who are trying to censor the film. We find it worrisome that movies theaters would bow to the pressure of a few, who have not seen the film to our knowledge, preventing audiences from getting access to vital information about a CDC whistleblower.” -Philippe Diaz, Chairman Cinema Libre Studio.
The film is produced by British filmmaker Polly Tommey of the Autism Media Channel and Del Bigtree, an American and former producer of the hit show “The Doctors.” The film is directed by Dr. Andrew Wakefield, a British academic gastroenterologist who has published over 140 peer-reviewed scientific publications and spoken internationally on autism and vaccines. Dr. Wakefield and Dr. John Walker-Smith, one of the world’s leading pediatric gastroenterologists, were the first to discover that vaccines caused gut problems that could lead to autism (1998). They, along with 11 other authors, published their findings in The Lancet, a British medical journal, in February 1998.
For this, the British General Medical Council (GMC), acting to protect the government from coming under fire for the potential damage caused by vaccines, decided that Dr. Wakefield and his co-author had acted unethically, and they lost their medical licenses. Both Dr. Wakefield and Professor Walker-Smith appealed the GMC ruling in the English High Court. Professor Walker-Smith’s professional insurance paid for his appeal. Dr. Wakefield’s insurance carrier would not, therefore Dr. Wakefield was not able to continue his appeal. After reviewing the original findings, Justice Mitting found that the GMC’s conclusions were “based on inadequate and superficial reasoning” and that “the finding of serious professional misconduct and the sanction of erasure are both quashed.” Dr. Walker-Smith’s license was completely reinstated, and all charges against him were dismissed.
Ninety percent of the charges against Walker-Smith were the same charges as those against Dr. Wakefield, so had he been able to appeal, the verdict would have applied to Dr. Wakefield also. The Lancet paper should have been reinstated, and yet The Lancet editor refused to do that in order to protect his reputation and his job. Justice Mitting’s judicial decision marked a long-awaited turning point in a decades long campaign to discredit the 1998 Lancet article and Dr. Wakefield in particular.
Vaxxed captured international headlines when it was pulled from the already-announced line-up of the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival on March 25th, due to pressure from sponsors on the festival organizers. Immediately following the de-selection from the festival, Cinema Libre Studio launched the film on a nationwide theatrical release with an unprecedented 4 ½ days of preparation, premiering April 1st at the prestigious Angelika Film Center in NYC, where it achieved the highest single screen box office gross for a documentary that year. Since then, the film has experienced numerous examples of additional censorship in the U.S.
Two weeks later, Robert De Niro, a festival co-founder, went on national network television (NBC’s “Today Show”) and renounced the “de-selection” of the film saying, “I think the movie is something that people should see. There was definitely something to that movie…” He goes on to say, “There’s a lot of information about things that are happening with the CDC, the pharmaceutical companies. I, as a parent of a child who has autism, I’m concerned. And I want to know the truth.”
Despite these setbacks, Vaxxed has subsequently enjoyed a robust release in the U.S. and Canada where it has a reported gross of $1.2 Million in box office. Vaxxed is the 8th highest grossing documentary of 2016 and has been seen by more than a half a million people in theaters and in 49 states. In addition to the successful theatrical run, Vaxxed has been screened in over 400 cinemas via Gathr theatrical-on-demand program as well as in over 100 alternative venues.
In 2016, the Vaxxed team of filmmakers, editors and photographers launched The Vaxxed Nation Tour, an expansive U.S. bus tour with stops in Congressional districts that have members who sit on the United States House Committee of Oversight & Government Reform, the entity which oversees the CDC. With targeted screening events and Q&As in these districts, the Vaxxed bus tour hopes to progress the subpoenaing of Dr. Thompson (the CDC Whistleblower featured in the documentary) by the committee. The Vaxxed Nation bus, now a cultural phenomenon and a symbol of health freedom across the country, has stopped at cities all across the nation to record stories from autism families, health professionals, others affected by vaccine injury while meeting with legislators and joining town hall meetings.
To date, the Vaxxed Nation bus has recorded over 1000 vaccine injury stories on film and 6,500 written stories of vaccine injury have been submitted through Vaxxed.com by parents and families from all over the world, many of which are from the U.K. These stories will be submitted to President Trump’s new Commission on Vaccine Safety to help illustrate the devastating prevalence of vaccine injury. To date, 5000 names of vaccine injured people have been written on the bus, serving as a collective memorial of those who have been severely injured or have died from vaccines.
Del Bigtree, Producer
Philippe Diaz, Chairman, Cinema Libre Studio
Polly Tommey, Producer
Dr. Andrew Wakefield, Director
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Jamie Coker Robertson,
Beth Portello, Cinema Libre Studio