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Jessica Chastain in 'Zero Dark Thirty"
© AP / Jessica Chastain in 'Zero Dark Thirty'
Ed Asner and Martin Sheen call for Oscar voters to ignore 'Zero Dark Thirty'


Actors Ed Asner and Martin Sheen are urging Oscar voters to boycott "Zero Dark Thirty" over the film's torture scenes.

The film, which shot to number one at the box office over the weekend, and star Jessica Chastain are both up for Academy Awards next month, but many film fans have been turned off by director Kathryn Bigelow's decision to include graphic scenes of U.S. intelligence chiefs waterboarding and humiliating detained alleged terrorists for information.

Bing: 'Zero Dark Thirty' controversy

Asner and Sheen have joined a list of actors protesting the movie because of the torture scenes. "I would like to condemn the movie," Asner told the New York Times. Asner and Sheen are asking Oscar voters to "factor in matters of conscience when casting awards votes," the report says.

Bigelow and screenwriting partner Mark Boal have also come under fire from top politicians, who fear the torture scenes in the film were created using classified information about the techniques used to extract information from detainees.

In the movie, one terrorist character was stripped in front of Chastain's CIA Agent and forced to crawl around on all fours like a dog. In another scene, water is poured over a damp cloth placed over his nose and mouth during an interrogation in what has become known as waterboarding and depriving the victim of oxygen.

Chastain is a favorite to win the Best Actress award at the Oscars after picking up Critics' Choice and Golden Globe accolades.

Jan 15, 2013 8:37AM
I think some people live in denial of the realities of war. I don't like the idea of torture anymore then anyone else and I don't condone it in anyway...but is a real occurrence and should be revealed as such.

Jan 15, 2013 8:36AM
Ironic. For years I have been advising people to shun Ed Asner and especially Martin Sheen. Charlie followed Martin's guidance and look how he turned out.
Jan 15, 2013 8:34AM

nice guys do not win wars,killing is never good ,but you have to adapt to your foe,when in any war you play by their rules only harder,saw this happen in viet nam,i was there ,like i said nice gus don't win wars we need another Patton right now, how do you win a war when your foe is not afraid t show him that being a terrorist is a no win cause,thru what ever means necc,there is no place for politics in war,and no pc either,just read your history books

Jan 15, 2013 8:33AM

What - thumbing your nose at Ben Affleck for daring to show U,S. covert operatives in a positive light wasn't enough?

Jan 15, 2013 8:23AM
censorship is part of the problem, we need to be able to see, read, watch, listen to ANYTHING we choose.  If after reading, watching, listening etc, inappropriate behavior occurs, then action can be taken but knowledge, even of horrible things, makes us, ultimately, better.

There are factions all over the world who try to limit our ability to "know".  Knowledge is power, power for good as well as bad.  Personally, I don't think liberals support censorship, it is more draconian than their usual charter which is "live and let live..."  I'm a liberal and I don't think censoring this movie, or any other movie or book is the answer.

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