Sony Pictures Classics released a statement Wednesday evening condemning actor Peter Fonda’s tweet about Donald Trump and his son, Barron, but says it will not remove Fonda from the film “Boundaries,” which the indie distributor will release this weekend.
“Peter Fonda’s comments are abhorrent, reckless and dangerous, and we condemn them completely,” the statement read.
“It is important to note that Mr. Fonda plays a very minor role in the film. To pull or alter this film at this point would unfairly penalize the filmmaker Shana Feste’s accomplishment, the many actors, crew members and other creative talent that worked hard on the project.”
Fonda made the tweet during a late-night online rant against Trump and his administration’s family separation policy against undocumented migrants on the U.S.-Mexico border.
“We should rip Barron Trump from his mother’s arms and put him in a cage with pedophiles,” the actor wrote in all-caps. “And see if mother will stand up against the giant a-hole she is married to.”
The tweet received a swift backlash, with Donald Trump Jr. calling Fonda a “sick individual” in a response tweet. Fonda deleted the tweet and issued an apology.
“I tweeted something highly inappropriate and vulgar about the president and his family in response to the devastating images I was seeing on television,” he wrote. “Like many Americans, I am very impassioned and distraught over the situation with children separated from their families at the border, but I went way too far. It was wrong and I should not have done it. I immediately regretted it and sincerely apologize to the family for what I said and any hurt my words have caused.”
Fonda has a minor role in the upcoming film “Boundaries,” which will be released on five screens in New York and Los Angeles this weekend. After condemning Fonda on Twitter, Trump Jr. noted Fonda’s presence in the film and floated the idea of him being removed from the final cut, comparing it to ABC cancelling the hit show “Roseanne” just hours after lead star Roseanne Barr posted racist tweets.
“I wonder if they will apply the same rules to [Fonda] that they did to [Barr.]” Trump Jr. tweeted. “I have a strange suspicion that they wont [sic] do anything.”
Earlier Wednesday, after pressure from politicians and protesters, Trump signed an executive order ending the family separation policy and calling for immigration cases involving families to take priority to reduce their waiting time.
However, the policy does not contain provisions for the estimated 2,300 children that have already been separated from their families to be reunited, and also orders that families will be detained by the Department of Homeland Security “to the extent permitted by law and subject to the availability of appropriations” and possibly indefinitely.
The order also calls for the preparation of additional detention centers, many of which will be created at military facilities run by the Department of Defense.