Jim Carrey is clearly the biggest star involved in "Kick-Ass 2," the sequel to the wickedly subversive comic book adaptation about a teenager who wants to become a real-life superhero. But don't expect Carrey to be making the press rounds for the film, which opens in August.
Last night, the actor tweeted "I did Kickass a month b4 Sandy Hook and now in all good conscience I cannot support that level of violence." And then: "I meant to say my apologies to others involve with the film. I am not ashamed of it but recent events have caused a change in my heart."
Carrey is known for his outspokenness on gun violence -- recently, he released a Funny or Die parody poking fun at the pro-gun lobby.
Mark Millar, who wrote the "Kick Ass" comic book series and produced the film, took to the Internet to discuss Carrey's decision at length:
"Carrey in particular is magnificent [in the movie]. He's never done anything like this before and even from the trailer, with his masked dog sidekick specially trained to munch criminal balls, you can see that something really fun and special is happening here... which made it all the more surprising when Jim announced tonight that the gun-violence in Kick-Ass 2 has made him withdraw his support from the picture."
Millar then added:
"As you may know, Jim is a passionate advocate of gun-control and I respect both his politics and his opinion, but I'm baffled by this sudden announcement as nothing seen in this picture wasn't in the screenplay eighteen months ago... Like Jim, I'm horrified by real-life violence (even though I'm Scottish), but Kick-Ass 2 isn't a documentary. No actors were harmed in the making of this production! This is fiction and like Tarantino and Peckinpah, Scorcese and Eastwood, John Boorman, Oliver Stone and Chan-Wook Park, Kick-Ass avoids the usual bloodless body-count of most big summer pictures and focuses instead of the CONSEQUENCES of violence, whether it's the ramifications for friends and family or, as we saw in the first movie, Kick-Ass spending six months in hospital after his first street altercation. Ironically, Jim's character in Kick-Ass 2 is a Born-Again Christian and the big deal we made of the fact that he refuses to fire a gun is something he told us attracted him to the role in the first place."
At the end of his lengthy missive, Millar said: "Jim, I love ya and I hope you reconsider for all the above points. You're amazing in this insanely fun picture and I'm very proud of what Jeff, Matthew and all the team have done here."
Carrey might end up reconsidering if only because of economics. He hasn't had a certifiable smash since "Bruce Almighty" -- and that was a decade ago. Career rejuvenation, after all, is the most kick-ass thing in Hollywood.