Victoria theatre company cancels controversial film screening

Blue Bridge president calls pricing tactics by filmmaker ‘irresponsible’

The Blue Bridge Theatre Society’s Roxy Theatre won’t be screening the film Building the Room this Thursday due to a dispute over the filmmaker’s controversial males-pay-more pricing strategy. Don Denton/Black Press

Blue Bridge Theatre Society, which operates the Roxy Theatre on Quadra Street, has cancelled the controversial showing of Building the Room for this week over a dispute around higher ticket pricing for “cisgender white males.”

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In a release Tuesday, the local theatre company announced it had cancelled its agreement with filmmaker Shiraz Higgins to host the Sept. 28 screening. Society president Evan Roberts characterized the actions taken to promote the event, which included an element Higgins labelled “justice pricing” that initially called for males to pay double, as a “breach of contract with the society” and “irresponsible.”

“Making this [pricing] announcement without the knowledge or consent of BBTS has resulted in a storm of negative response aimed at Mr. Higgins and BBTS,” Roberts wrote. “The society wishes to take definitive action to distance itself from this illegitimate pricing scheme to preserve the faith and commitment of the audience members who attend the productions and events of BBTS and other client user groups at the Roxy Theatre.”

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