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Albinos group protests ''Da Vinci Code''

Albinos group protests ”Da Vinci Code” — The advocacy group objects to the vilification of an albino character in the book, which will soon be adapted for the big screen

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Add an unlikely new group to the long list of critics peeved about Ron Howard’s upcoming Da Vinci Code movie: albinos, or ”people with albinism” (the genetic condition affects about 1 in 17,000). The National Organization of Albinism and Hypopigmentation (NOAH) doesn’t want Silas, the self-flagellating killer albino from the Dan Brown best-seller, on the big screen. The ”evil albino,” says Dr. Vail Reese, a dermatologist who works with NOAH, ”has become a Hollywood stock character. And one would hope an Oscar winner like Ron Howard would take the game higher than this hurtful B-movie stereotype.” Especially because, Reese notes, 2004 was just the second year in two decades that didn’t have an evil movie albino. (The sole ’04 on-screen albino — in Iceland’s Nói Albinói — ”is just a guy,” says Reese. ”He’s not out to take over the world.”) Columbia and Imagine, which are producing the movie, had no comment.

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