Petition seeks to stop release of 'Slender Man' movie

An online petition has been launched to pressure Sony to halt the release of its upcoming "Slender Man" film.

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The film, set to be released in May, focuses on the fictional Slender Man character. Two preteen girls stabbed a classmate 19 times in 2014, citing Slender Man as an inspiration, WISN reported. The victim, Peyton Lautner, survived the attack. Both attackers were found not guilty due to mental illness. Anissa Weier, now 16, received a maximum sentence of 25 years in a state mental facility, WISN reported. Morgan Geyes will be sentenced in February, WISN reported.

The petition, which is supported by Bill Weier, Anissa's father, accuses filmmakers of trying to "capitalize on a tragedy." Bill Weier called the film "extremely distasteful" and said its promotion is "extending the pain" of all of the families involved in the stabbing incident.

The petition has received several thousand signatures in support of pulling the film.