It's like screening "The Towering Inferno" to wind up an architect's convention; or showing "The Poseidon Adventure" on a cruise ship; or "Earthquake" to the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce.
In other words, it takes a certain sense of humor. But tomorrow we're all invited. We can fill that terrible void after Supr Bowl XIII -- Cowboys vs. Steelers in Miami's Orange Bowl -- by tuning in the CBS movie.
It's "Black Sunday," in which a crazed Vietnam veteran hijacks the Goodyear blimp and tries to exterminate the 80,000 people watching a Super Bowl game -- Cowboys vs. Steelers in Miami's Orange Bowl.
"What's frightening is that Cecil B. is controlling society," Dallas defenseman Cliff Harris was quoted as saying on one wire report. "And he'll get someone killed at the Super Bowl yet."
Miami police have already instructed the Goodyear blimp crew to tighten security. ABC's Warner Wolf made the showing his "Boo of the Week," saying that "It's true that the movie will not be shown till that night -- but all week they've been running promotions with film clips, and I'm sure the Miami police department does not appreciate it. Bad taste!"
"The head of CBS down here called us and offered to cancel the broadcast, but we said 'You've been advertising it for three weeks, what good would it do?'" said Ura Bryant III, member of the Miami police department's S.W.A.T. (special weapons and tactics) team. The team has been prepped to respond to mass violence or kidnapping with helicopters, fixed-wing aircraft, semiautomatic weapons and rappelling devices.
Newsmen in Miami have been vying to extract the most flash from comments made earlier in the week by S.W.A.T. boss Capt. Mike Cosgrove. Published remarks have included: "The threat is there. You have the potential. The whole point of terrorism is publicity. A disruption of the Super Bowl would be a big plus for any of those terrorist groups."
Cosgrove says there's evidence of operatives in Miami, including Cubans, Iranians, Haitians, the Jewish Defense League and black militants.
"This all got blowed out of proportion," said Assistant Chief Harry Griffin. "I think the publicity has been more damaging than the showing of the movie."
But who, sitting in that stadium tomorrow, won't think twice when that ghostly Goodyear blimp slides into view over the top of the stadium? What end ransacking the sky for a 30-yard pass, won't lose just a touch of concentration?
The movie, said Dallas' Pat Donovan, "might give someone a good idea. People crazy enough to do things like that usually aren's so creative."
But the people creative enough to make movies like that aren't so crazy, either, and they know that not only megadeath disaster has a bizarre appeal, but so does the Super Bowl represent a fervor, a mythic fascination, rarely seen in America nowadays.
"Black Sunday" isn't the first Super Bowl disaster movie.
A year ago, when CBS was broadcasting the game, ABC -- for all of Warner Wolf's moralizing -- screened "Superdome" the Monday before the game. That extravaganza showed an attempted fix of the Super Bowl, shootings, druggings and a chase scene with a professional assassin scrambling across the top of the New Orleans Superdome moments before kickoff.
Before that, we had "Two Minute Warning," in which a sniper was loosed on the crowd at Super Bowl VII in the Los Angeles Coliseum.
But they were small-time. "Black Sunday," with Robert Shaw, Bruce Dern and Marthe Keller, has its terrorist build a gondola-sized bomb to hang beneath the Goodyear blimp, studded with enough nails and debris to slaughter Cowboy and Steeler fans, trapped in the Orange Bowl, by the tens-of-thousands.
And in our era that blimp, on Sunday, will not only fly but loom.
NBC sources said they were delighted that CBS was promoting the movie with the phrase "on Super Bowl Sunday," because of the publicity it gives the game.
Other industry officials commented that the scheduling is an aggressive move in a season in which competition has hit all-time highs of ruthlessness.
CBS sources said it was no more aggressive than ABC putting its Elvis Presley special up against CBS' showing of "Gone With the Wind."
Stakes are high, after all: advertising in that ultra "prime" time slot sells for $50-60,000 per half-minute.
Come Sunday, uniformed Miami police, the S.W.A.T. team, the NFL security people, state troopers, Dade County police and 80,000 people will be ready.
The irony is that most of them will be so stuck in traffic, getting away from the Orange Bowl, that they'll have to miss the movie. Then again, when their friends ask them if they watched, they can always say: "No, but I saw the game."