Justin Bieber says he was a bullying victim
(CNN) — The Weinstein Company’s documentary on bullying in schools has received another show of support from teen pop star Justin Bieber.
The 18-year-old singer has provided the soundtrack for a new TV spot for the “Bully”. documentary with his song “Born to Be Somebody.” The clip, which premiered on Fandango.com, began airing on TV Monday.
“I was bullied,” Bieber told “Showbiz Tonight’s” Kareen Wynter in an exclusive interview. “Most people in their lifetime have been bullied at some point. I think that it’s about time that people start making a change.”
“A lot of the time,” he went on, “principals let it go, or teachers let it go, or other students just let it go, but I think this movie’s really powerful and can help change a lot of lives.”
Directed by Lee Hirsch, “Bully” explores the difficult topic of school bullying through the eyes of five students, and was at the center of the controversy when the MPAA denied it a PG-13 rating and gave it an R, thereby restricting access to the age group most affected by the film’s subject.
Following a fervent campaign to change the film’s rating, which had support from several high-profile celebs including Bieber, the MPAA did grant “Bully” a PG-13 assignation.
The important thing, Bieber continued, is to call attention to the problem. “If you’re a bystander, too, tell somebody – because a lot of times, it’s just not spoken of, and you ended up – you end up keeping it all inside, and then it just hurts even more.”
According to a statement from the Weinstein Company, Bieber was “one of the dozens of stars who helped #BullyMovie trend on Twitter recently raising further awareness as the film approached its release in theaters,” and the superstar himself says he’s been more than happy to offer support.
“My fans are always up for supporting a great cause. It’s one of the things I’m most proud of as an entertainer,” he says in the statement. “I hope they see ‘Bully’ with their friends and help start the conversation so we can end bullying.”
The documentary, already released in select theaters, will open wide in 25 markets on April 13.
If you’ve seen the movie, what’d you think?