Judd Apatow Stands Behind ‘This Is 40' Child-Murder Joke

The director will not be removing the potentially offensive joke from his latest comedy after the Newtown massacre

Despite the tragic Newtown school shootings last Friday, Judd Apatow will not be removing a child-murder joke from his newest film, "This Is 40," which opens Friday.

The line is spoken by Albert Brooks' character while spraying his set of triplets with a hose.

"Line up! Line up for murder! Come on! Who wants to be killed?" he jokes before one of his kids shouts, "I do!"

After seeing how much fun it is to get drenched, another yells, "Murder me!"

"All right. The kids are murdered," Brooks adds. "That will save us some money."

“I wrote this script two years ago. That line is spoken by a sarcastic father kidding with his children," the director said in a statement to TheWrap. "In light of recent events, I understand if some people might make an unfortunate association or put it in a context in which it was not intended.” 

Also read: Newtown School Shootings: How Hollywood Reacted

Apatow's response contrasts with how some of Hollywood has reacted to the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy. The Weinstein Company canceled the Los Angeles premiere of "Django Unchained" and Paramount altered "Jack Reacher" marketing to minimize violence.

There has been an immense amount of sensitivity to the subject in the comedy arena, as well.

Also read: Paramount Alters Marketing Campaign for 'Jack Reacher' After Newtown Shooting

Jay Leno was unsure whether he should even be on the air making jokes the same day as the murders, but ultimately reasoned "The Tonight Show" was a welcomed distraction. On Monday, Jimmy Kimmel shed a few tears while using his monologue to send condolences to the victims' families,

David Letterman told his audience he was deeply shaken by the news and Conan O'Brien refrained from joking about any news.