Heavyweight filmmaker Kevin Smith has challenged bosses of a top U.S. airline to prove he was "too fat" for a flight at the weekend (13Feb10) - and vowed to donate $10,000 (£6,250) to charity if they succeed.
The star and director of Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back was asked to leave a Southwest Airlines plane from Oakland to Burbank, California on Saturday after the captain became concerned his weight would be a safety risk.
Smith was offered a $100 (£62.50) airline voucher as compensation, but rejected the money - and is still fuming about the way he was treated.
The moviemaker is adamant he is a regular passenger with the airline and has never experienced any problems before - and has challenged executives at the company to prove he is too large for their seats.
In a series of posts on his Twitter.com page, Smith writes, "I don't want their $ (money); just want to call attention to their policy so large folks think twice before buying.
"Contrary to their claim that I regularly purchase two seats, I wasn't a regular 2-seat buyer until just this week. They SEIZED on that. In their 'apology' blog, they implied (or flat-out wrote) that I regularly purchase 2 seats. Writing that buttresses their lie: 2 Fat 2 Fly.
"But, by their own guidelines, I was not, in fact, 2 Fat 2 Fly: the arm rests went down & I could buckle my seat belt w/o an extender. So...? Hey @SouthwestAir: you bring that same row of seats to the DailyShow, and I'll sit in 'em for all to see on TV.
"If I don't fit, I'll donate $10k to charity of your choice. But when I do (& buckle the belt as well)? 1) You admit you lied. 2) Change your policy, or at least re-train your staff to be a lot more human and a lot less corporate."