Abortion film causes a stir

UPDATE 7:07 p.m.

According to the Kelowna Right to Life Society, the special screening of Unplanned at the Landmark Grand 10 for July 15 sold out in nine minutes.

Tickets went on sale Tuesday at 6 p.m., online sales only, and were gone by 6:09 p.m. 

Marlon Bartram, executive director of the KRLS, said he will try to arrange for more showings in Kelowna.


A controversial movie that has sparked protests and threats across Canada will still hit the big screen in the Central Okanagan.

However, "Unplanned," based on the true story of a Planned Parenthood clinic director who becomes an anti-abortion speaker, will only be shown for private screenings.

Bill Walker, CEO of Landmark Cinemas, says there were initial plans for a one-week run of the movie in Kelowna, however when the company "changed its booking strategy, that has caused some stir."

"It was anticipated to have a full week release at the Grand 10. As we make our booking decisions every Monday, we made the decision we were only going to play it in seven locations (not 10) ... and, in Kelowna, there was other product being released, and we made the decision not to run the movie," he said.

The film will, however, have at least two private screenings, booked by the Kelowna Right To Life Society.

Society executive Marlon Bartram confirmed his organization has booked the theatre for a show Monday at the Grand 10, after tickets for next Wednesday's showing at the Xtreme 8 in West Kelowna sold out in just two hours.

Walker says security will be stepped up at both theatres. Several theatres across the country, including the Salmar Theatre in Salmon Arm, have pulled the movie after receiving threats.

Cineplex Theatres is showing the movie in 14 of its 164 theatres, while Landmark is making it available in seven.

Matti Koopman, senior leader at New Life Centre in Kelowna, tells Castanet he's concerned about the effect such decisions have on free speech about the abortion issue.

"It feels like stealth censorship by both movie theatres," said Koopman. "I get they're in a difficult position. It is a very, very hot topic, and there are people with strong feelings on both sides of the perspective."

Tickets for the second showing Monday at the Grand 10 go on sale today at 6 p.m.

If they sell out quickly, Bartram indicated the Right to Life Society may look at booking a third screening.

More Kelowna News

Recent Trending



Kelowna SPCA Featured Pet

Odie Kelowna SPCA >



Castanet Proud Member of RTNDA Canada