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Robert De Niro steps into autism vaccination row by screening film

Actor criticised for adding doc by Andrew Wakefield, who was struck off UK medical register, to Tribeca festival bill

A disgraced former British surgeon’s new documentary about the discredited link between autism and childhood vaccination has put Robert De Niro at the centre of a medical row that threatens the reputation of his prestigious film festival in New York.

De Niro, the father of an autistic child and co-founder of the Tribeca film festival, is standing by the decision to premiere Vaxxed: from Cover-Up to Catastrophe, which has been directed by the controversial Andrew Wakefield. To the dismay of a number of doctors, health campaigners and filmmakers, De Niro conceded it was not usual for him to be so directly involved with programming the festival. But he said the issue was “very personal to me and my family”.

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