Kathryn Bigelow at the BAFTA Awards
On Jan. 15 director Kathryn Bigelow wrote a letter on the Los Angeles Times defending her film "Zero Dark Thirty" after actors, politicians and Academy Award Members heavily criticized and attacked the film for its torture scenes.
The Academy Award winning director Bigelow talked about the controversy stating she was not endorsing torture or politicians. She stated "I think Osama Bin Laden was found due to ingenious detective work. Torture was, however, as we all know, employed in the early years of the hunt. That doesn't mean it was the key to finding Bin Laden. It means it is a part of the story we couldn't ignore. War, obviously, isn't pretty, and we were not interested in portraying this military action as free of moral consequences."
Bigelow added that she supports the 1st Amendment's right "to create works of art and speak their conscience without government interference or harassment."
Bigelow also stated that the process of making the film was one of the biggest struggles as very little people were willing to collaborate and there were too many secrets and politicians standing in the way. She stated "I thought the movie that became 'Zero Dark Thirty' would never happen."
She thanked the people who backed her film by stating "Somehow, though, thanks to the great persistence of my filmmaking team and an enormous dose of luck, we got the movie made and found studio partners with the courage to release it."
"Zero Dark Thirty" has been part of a controversy for the past month after politicians Diane Feinstein and John McCain called for an investigation against the film and condemned it for its torture scenes.
A few days ago Academy members David Clennon, Ed Asner and Martin Sheen called for a boycott against the film so fellow Academy members would not vote for it. "Thirty" also made headlines over the summer when it was revealed that Mark Boal and Kathryn Bigelow met with White House officials and were given access to CIA records.
"Zero Dark Thirty" is currently nominated for five Academy Award nominations including Best Picture and Best Actress for Jessica Chastain. The film won a Golden Globe for Best Actress and a Critics' Choice award. The film is currently in theaters and won the box office this past weekend.