“I’m perplexed. They dragged us along for weeks. Now, right up against the convention date, they say we aren’t approved, and they give us no logical rationale,” Fedyski said. “My speculation is that someone, somewhere didn’t want our message out. It’s hard to understand, considering we’ve used the same marketing on CNN and other national networks.”
The Cleveland Host Committee is, in fact, working with the RNC to guarantee that anti-Republican groups don’t spoil the convention venue with provocative signage (the Democratic National Convention is working in concert with Philadelphia for similar assurances for their convention). It's unclear, though — even from the multiple emails sent to Pure Flix — whom it was who actually deemed the God's Not Dead 2 sign inappropriate. A spokesman for the mayor of Cleveland said the city had no objections to the content of the sign.
One email from Orange Barrel to Pure Flix, though, reads: "This would not be approved. Way too incendiary." The "incendiary" text the email refers to, is this: "I'd rather stand with God and be judged by the world than stand with the world and be judged by God."
Orange Barrel CEO Pete Scantland told THR that there was "no bias" intended, and said his company never actually obtained permission from the city to put any sign on the building in question, which Fedyski finds odd.
“They picked the building and the size, and advertised that it was available," he said. "They gave us a budget and deadlines and we met all of it, then they put us on hold. We missed a primary promotional opportunity."
Since the deadline has passed for a God’s Not Dead 2 sign to appear at the Republican convention, it seemingly allows the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s pro-atheism message (which appears on a Clear Channel billboard) to go unchallenged.
“It’s near the airport, right after the ‘Welcome to Cleveland’ sign,” said Annie Laurie Gaylor, a spokesperson for the group. “The idea was that people flying in to the convention couldn’t miss it.”
Gaylor said her group has also secured more than 30 signs promoting atheism at the Democratic National Convention, which runs July 25-28.
Watch the trailer for God's Not Dead 2. The DVD comes out Aug. 16 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.
Source: Paul Bond via Hollywood Reporter
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