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ATL Stirs Controversy

by Pamela Cole

Atlanta, GA, Mar. 23, 2006—The film formerly known as the "Untitled Chris Robinson Project," aka "Jellybeans," is stirring up trouble even before it opens in theaters on Mar. 31 as simply ATL. This film was in production under so many names, it may have lost its identity along the way. What started as a contemporary urban comedy has become a PG-13-rated film with enough violence to spook security directors at mall theaters.

Local television news station WSB reported today that General Growth properties, owners of Cumberland and Perimeter malls in the Atlanta area, issued a memo to mall security to "prepare" for the film's release.

In the memo, General Growth said, "The movie could cause behavior problems among customers." The company later told WSB reporters that they were "just being proactive" due to problems they had with crowds when another film opened several years ago.

The Warner Bros. released-film, ATL, was shot in Atlanta and produced by Atlanta native Dallas Austin and a string of other named producers including Will Smith. The film is based on Austin and rap artist T-Boz Watkins' experiences growing up in Atlanta. The story centers around a skating rink on the southside of town called "Jellybeans." Austin is also a music producer who penned the city's new hip-hop flavored anthem recently, similarly entitled "The ATL."

ATL is the first feature film directed by well-known video director, Chris Robinson. Previewers of the film reported that it includes some drug-related violence.

For more information, see the website for ATL the film.