An email to Kent Haehl and Paul Folkemer

October 19, 2012
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Official movie poster for The Possession. 
 
From Jim Metrock:  I saw this Channel One News-promoted horror movie in September and wrote the two men that I believe are ultimately responsible for advertising it to young people not only on the Channelone.com website, but in American high school and middle school classrooms. I now feel the need to share this email because it is becoming obvious that Channel One News is beginning to routinely advertise violent, scary movies to their youngest secondary school students during their classroom time, and to elementary school students who visit their website.
 
After this movie ad campaign, Channel One launched into another horror movie promotion for The House at the End of the Street. The two people copied in the email are Channel One’s longtime lobbyist Martin Christie who has worked tirelessly for over a decade to keep Channel One commercials playing in Alabama classrooms, and Jodie Pozo-Olano, the PR person for Channel One’s partner Promethean World. Nobody responded to my email.  Go figure.
 
The mention of “Strauss” refers to Strauss Zelnick the head of ZelnickMedia the investor group that is the relatively new parent company of Channel One. Mr. Zelnick likes to invest in growing, profitable companies so his patience with the ever-shrinking Channel One is probably being tested.
 
 
 
Thu, Sep 13, 2012 at 10:10 PM
 
To:khaehl@channelone.com,
 pfolkemer@channelone.com
Cc: mchristie@christiestrategygroup.com,
 jodie.pozo-olano@prometheanworld.com
 
Subject: Possession
 
Mr. Haehl and Dr. Folkemer

I saw The Possession today.
You both are responsible for advertising this horror movie to teens and preteens.
Since I saw it less than five hours ago, I am still very angry so I have to be cautious with my words.
To call you two “irresponsible” is the least I can do. Oddly, I think you both wouldn’t argue with that description.
Neither of you watched this ultra-violent film before you approved the ads for it and neither of you now will dare to see what you urged 11-year-olds to see.
I think I can call you “cowards” too. That probably doesn’t even hurt your feelings. I think you both have become numb to any criticism of your kiddie marketing efforts.
The Possession was horrific. 
Pay attention, Kent and Paul. Here comes a teachable moment for you two gentlemen. The first scene shows a “Mom” (adult child was at the door calling “Mother?”) being brutally murdered inside her house by an unseen force. Her back is broken (almost unwatchable), she is thrown against walls and the camera shows the sickening results. At the end of an unbelievably repulsive series of torturous assaults on the “Mom” her head is slammed face-first into the glass top of a table.  That was the first scene of YOUR movie. That is what Channel One News wanted kids to see.
Do you understand why your company is dying?
This is horror-porn you are marketing to schoolchildren. Do you want to send me a reply? Do you want to defend yourselves? No. Neither of you have the courage. All you have is a private shame that has to have a corrosive and cumulative effect on your lives.
 
Your company is in major trouble. Promethean probably had no idea your company was advertising this kind of rot. (And now you are advertising another horror movie The House at the End of the Street and this one is being promoted on your website where elementary schoolchildren are visiting.) Strauss has to be sick of both of you. I know I am.
 

A demonic possessed girl greets students forced to watch Channel One News on August 31, 2012.  The movie being advertised is The Possession. Channel One News starts their daily show with a countdown from 10 to 1. They often use the countdown to pitch movies to their captive audience.

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