Washington Post : Truths about tobacco hit the big screen

February 14, 2012 : By Whitney Fetterhoff

Victor DeNoble (right) with Charles Evans

Most young Americans know that cigarettes are addictive, but until 1994, that was secret information. The revelation of that secret is the subject of “Addiction Incorporated,” a documentary by Charles Evans Jr. that was shown last week at the Landmark’s E Street Cinema in the District. The film tells the story of Victor DeNoble, a scientist hired by Phillip Morris in the 1980s to conduct research on nicotine and create a “safe cigarette” that would not harm smokers’ health. 

Evans uses animation, and DeNoble himself explaining things, to show how DeNoble conducted tests on rats and “inadvertently created indisputable evidence that nicotine was addictive, something the tobacco companies had long denied.” Evans wants you to know the measures the tobacco industry took to contest DeNoble’s findings, including filing a $10 billion libel lawsuit when ABC News reported on them. (The suit was settled after ABC apologized for reporting that cigarette companies manipulated nicotine levels in their products.) If you ever doubted that cigarettes are bad for your health, “Addiction Incorporated” will certainly clear up the confusion.

Go to for more information, including video interviews with DeNoble and others in the film, outtakes and a list of showings around the country.

 Source: Washington Post