Moviegoers call for Joker 'boycott' after film uses song of convicted paedophile in soundtrack

Moviegoers call for Joker 'boycott' after film uses song of convicted paedophile in soundtrack
Copyright Met Police and Retuers/Warner Bros Pictures
By Euronews
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The Joker movie, which broke box office records on opening weekend has been widely criticised after it used a song written by a convicted British paedophile in its soundtrack.


Moviegoers have been widely criticising the newly-released Joker movie over its use of a song performed and co-written by convicted British paedophile Gary Glitter during a key moment in the film.

The song, Rock and Roll part II, is played during a scene in which protagonist Arthur Fleck (played by Joaquin Phoenix) walks down a staircase after transforming into the Joker - the iconic enemy of Batman.

For some audiences, this choice of music appeared to overshadow the pivotal scene as they took to social media after viewing it to express their "shock".

Others were concerned about their money spent on tickets at the box office possibly ending up as royalties for the jailed star.

One Dublin-based Twitter user Gearoid Gillett said the choice of music was both "irresponsible and egregious".

He added: "No one ever should be using Gary Glitter's music in their movies or anywhere for that matter."

Meanwhile, others have called for a boycott of the film, especially if it is confirmed that Glitter would receive any money.

But speaking to Yahoo News, The Music Royalty Co. managing director Ray Bush said it's possible Glitter won't actually receive royalties for the usage - and may instead receive a one-off fee.

"Artists are usually paid a one-off ‘synchronisation fee’ when their songs are used on movie soundtracks," he said.

"It can range from £500 for smaller acts up to £250,000-£500,000, depending on the artist and the importance to the narrative of the film. There are many middlemen involved, including the record label, Glitter’s agent and sometimes a ‘synchronisation’ agent, with artists sometimes only receiving a measly amount from the deal."

Despite this, many audiences were still uncomfortable that Glitter could see any money from the use of his song.

"Well, I don't want a single penny of my money going to a child rapist, so I guess I will miss out on this movie," one user wrote.


Others advised people to Google his name before choosing to watch the movie, which reportedly earned $234 million (€212 million) on its opening weekend.

"The film’s about how child abuse can impact people and #WarnerBros are paying a paedophile for his track," another Twitter user said.

He added: "Mental. Saw it last Friday and it was boring. Two reasons not to watch it for everyone else."

Gary Glitter - whose real name is Paul Gadd - is currently serving a 16-year sentence for sexually abusing young girls.

His offences include a charge of attempted rape and having sex with a girl under the age of 13.

Warner Brothers has not yet responded to Euronews' request for comment.

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