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Watching Big Brother: 200 theatres in the US are screening '1984' to protest against Donald Trump

April 4 was the day the film's protagonist began writing his forbidden diary under an authoritarian regime.

Around 200 art-house film theatres in the United States will screen the 1980’s remake of 1984 to protest against President Donald Trump’s administration, organisers United State of Cinema said. April 4 was selected as the screening date as it is the day the protagonist Winston Smith is shown making his first entry in his “forbidden diary”. The film will also be screened in five theatres in Canada, one each in England, Sweden, Holland, New Zealand and Croatia, organisers said.

Based on the dystopian novel of the same name, “[George] Orwell’s portrait of a government that manufactures their own facts, demands total obedience, and demonises foreign enemies, has never been timelier,” a statement by the organisers said.

The novel, which was published in 1949, was No. 6 on e-commerce portal Amazon’s best-seller list in January, CNN had reported. Media reports linked its renewed popularity to White House official Kellyanne Conway’s defence of White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s version of the number of people that attended Trump’s inauguration. Conway referred to Spicer’s claims as “alternative facts”, a phrase quite similar to terms used in the novel.

Trump’s regime has been marred by protests against his policies and views on several issues since his presidential election campaign.

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