msnbc | March 29, 2012
>> both activists and film critics call it's "r" rating ridiculous. producers agree and they are letting the acclaimed documentary open tomorrow and open without a rating. not all movie chains are on board. they are going to let underage kids with a permission slip or a guardian see the film. regal cinema says it plans to respect the original "r" rating which means no one under 17 will be admitted without a parent. joining me to talk about this is "bully q "bully" filmmaker and founder for justice and human rights , carrie kennedy. thanks so much for making time for this. lee, let's talk first about the film, the decision to release it without a rating. good idea or a bad idea and why?
>> it was the only option. we tried so hard to move the mpa. we went to capitol hill . we had a screening with chris dodd . it seemed like there was so much energy. half a million people signed this petition. they wouldn't budge. we couldn't release it with an " "r." this is the best way forward . i am hopeful as the pressure mounts, we will see a change from the mta.
>> i got to see this movie . i have moo you anti-bullying but. carrie shall the last time you were hear talking about what the center is doing, speak truth to power, part of the curriculum of the rfk center is to take messages directly into the classrooms. would the "bully" movie something that you think you can take in?
>> absolutely. this is one of the movies we are advocating for that people should see this. we want students. we want teachers, administrators and parents, whole neighborhoods to see this movie , because it is so important for people to understand what bullying is and what they can do to make a difference.
>> this takes a look at the old-school stuff that we probably all experienced as kids. most recently in the news over the last couple of years has been the fact that the bullying problem is brought into people's homs through social media . we have the 2010 death of tyler clementi. the other of 2011 , jamie road myer and his suicide.
>> dozens that haven't risen to the national prominence.
>> do you think there needs to be a bully 2 movie focused on the social media aspect and how it per pet tu eights.
>> often a lot of cyberbullying is the extension of the brick-and-mortar bullying you see in our film. to be sitting here having this conversation, what's interesting is perhaps for the furs timirst time, we are looking at it as a human rights program. maybe it is not powerful enough to describe what happens to so many kids out there.
>> when you think of what we have seen like the rhodemeyer case or tyler clementi, are we doing enough?
>> absolutely not. there is so much more we can do. the way we view this is as a human rights issue. in all human rights violation situations, we see actors, the perpetrators, the defenders, the victims and the bystanders and what we are trying to do is make everybody into a defender. you can train people. people are trained to be bullies. they learn that. they are educated to be bullies. you can thain them the way you are trained to ride a bicycle or to lift heavier weights. what you can do to stop this. that's what the aim is.
>> it is really big for kids to see this movie . parents too. that's the big takeaway i got out when i got out of this. parents need to look at this and know if the kids are being bullied but if they are the bullies.
>> we are hearing from families that are gone. we are seeing whole families show up at screenings. they are saying thank you, because you have given us a way to have this conversation, a very tough conversation. it is awkward. our kids want to talk about it. they want to share the decisions they are struggling to make, if they are being bullied. it is a great way to talk about it.
>> it is a great piece of film making . lee hirsch , the filmmaker and kerry kennedy .
>> the film, "bully" opens on friday. for more information, logon to "bully" project.com.