Protesters make noise over 'Thunder'

Dozens demonstrate at film's Westwood premiere

Protesters, led by Special Olympics chairman and CEO Timothy Shriver, marched outside the Westwood premiere of DreamWorks' "Tropic Thunder" on Monday night.

Chanting and waving placards that read "Ban the movie, ban the word" and "Call me by my name, not my label," several dozen people tried to get the message across that the word "retard" and making fun of the mentally challenged is not comedy material.

In "Thunder," Ben Stiller's character is an actor who previously attempted to go for Oscar gold by playing a character called "Simple Jack." "Thunder" features the movie-within-a-movie's trailer, and Stiller is forced to re-enact scenes from the movie when he is captured by Asian drug lords.

DreamWorks and Paramount were well-prepared for the protest: The normally open red carpet was shielded by walls of 10-foot-high shrubs, thus preventing the protesters from even being in the background of television shots.

The ticket will call, normally situated just outside the California Pizza Kitchen restaurant, was moved to the side of a parking lot and protected by a temporary wall.
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