STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (Full Version)

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farley1711 -> STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (15/2/2013 2:36:45 PM)


Im a huge movie fan...studied it at university,see movies 2 or 3 times a week, have subscribed to EMPIRE pretty much since issue one...and for the first time Ive felt to start a forum here. For years Empire have addressed issues around censorship, however they appear to be dropping the ball on confronting a far more insidious form of censorship...studio edits to secure the wretched 12a.Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the 12a, appreciateing that there needs to be something a little more flexible sat between a PG and the rigid 15 classification. However studios have now realised that sacrificing 3 or 4 minutes of footage can secure them a family friendly rating...and allow them to release the inevitable ('harder, longer cut' on blu ray). For an industry which was fearing for its life years ago, insitgating censorship on its own creativity is inexcusable. The rest of the world have an unct Die Hard 5, why don't we? Taken 2 was butchered, looking more like it was edited for a sunday afternoon showing on Ch5.
For the first time ever Im considering illegally downloading a movie from the states to see it uncut. I wont be going to the movies to see Die Hard, and will probably not want to see it once it arrives on BluRay - retruning the respect 20th Century Fox have paid me with their greed and cynicism.
Id also be interested in the legal standings, as Advertising Standards should sure be making studios detail where we are not 'buying' the full product. That may be my next stop...
And c'mon Empire...you are our publication, not the stuidios. Represent us, and confront the studios ... Im boycotting any studio censored movie from now on. We know they only listen when we hit them in their wallets...




DancingClown -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (15/2/2013 2:45:37 PM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: farley1711
Id also be interested in the legal standings, as Advertising Standards should sure be making studios detail where we are not 'buying' the full product. That may be my next stop...


I don't think that will work. It's no secret that these cuts have taken place and no-one's forcing anyone to go see it.

If they were advertising it as being uncut (when we know it isn't) then maybe you'd have a point.




Dr Lenera -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (16/2/2013 12:03:28 PM)

I agree entirely with your sentiments. But I don't think what the studios are doing is illegal, and while magazines such as this one should maybe do more to speak out against the cutting of films, I can't see it happening. They've been censoring films for decades,especially when censorship was far tighter than it is now back in the 50s etc. Back in the 70s for instance they cut out every single shot of nunchukus [chainsticks] from Bruce Lee's films, whch removed entire fight scenes.




rich -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (16/2/2013 1:04:58 PM)

12a was introduced so that films that were a bit over the usual PG standard could be seen by younger kids if the parents decided, so technically the opposite of censorship.

As for the Die Hard thing, we are not the only country to have a problem with bits being cut out, but the problem is studio greed. Also since they did the same thing with Die Hard 4.0 I don't see where this sudden outrage has come from, bit late to the party.

Pal.




Shifty Bench -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (16/2/2013 5:14:50 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: rich

12a was introduced so that films that were a bit over the usual PG standard could be seen by younger kids if the parents decided, so technically the opposite of censorship.

As for the Die Hard thing, we are not the only country to have a problem with bits being cut out, but the problem is studio greed. Also since they did the same thing with Die Hard 4.0 I don't see where this sudden outrage has come from, bit late to the party.

Pal.


This isn't really the same thing. Die Hard 4 was intended to be rated R but Fox changed the script to lower the rating during filming so the intention was make it PG-13. We got exactly the same version as the US did, nothing was edited out in either version after the film was finished. The fifth film was filmed as an R rated film but Fox altered it a lot to make it 12A here, we are now getting a different version to the one seen in the US.




OldGrey -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (21/2/2013 8:42:58 PM)

Censorship is a necessary evil, but I do believe that the studios will use any opportunity they can to rake in as much wonga as possible. If this means cutting a film to slot it into a 12a then a lot of studios will do it. But the 12a itself is itself a problem, even Matt Damon publicly criticised the first 12a rating for Bourne. In my opinion, Bourne should have been a 15 and I have seen several 12a films that really should have been 15 s, is there really any need for the 12a do you think ?




Shifty Bench -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (21/2/2013 10:13:42 PM)

I don't think we need the 12a at all, I think it should have stayed just plain old 12.




Darth Marenghi -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (21/2/2013 10:38:50 PM)

Perhaps they should make a 15A - problem solved! [8D]




Shifty Bench -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (21/2/2013 10:45:45 PM)

I don't think there is a problem with the 12 certificate, though. I think if there was a 15a, they would still get edited if it meant 5 year olds could see them. It wouldn't really help. I think they should just drop the 'a' and keep them 12s.




rich -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (21/2/2013 10:56:32 PM)

From what I remember the issue was that kids seeing Spider-man plastered all over the boxes of breakfast cereal, TV ads etc etc then couldn't in fact go and see the film. So the problem was always money really.




Shifty Bench -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (21/2/2013 11:11:26 PM)

It usually is. [:)]




directorscut -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (21/2/2013 11:58:22 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Shifty Bench

I don't think there is a problem with the 12 certificate, though. I think if there was a 15a, they would still get edited if it meant 5 year olds could see them. It wouldn't really help. I think they should just drop the 'a' and keep them 12s.


Ireland has a 15A cert and I don't remember any film being cut for it. Although the market is probably too small for the studio to care. It would probably cost them more to make a new cut than what they would gain from a lower cert. [:D]




Shifty Bench -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (22/2/2013 12:02:47 AM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: directorscut


quote:

ORIGINAL: Shifty Bench

I don't think there is a problem with the 12 certificate, though. I think if there was a 15a, they would still get edited if it meant 5 year olds could see them. It wouldn't really help. I think they should just drop the 'a' and keep them 12s.


Ireland has a 15A cert and I don't remember any film being cut for it. Although the market is probably too small for the studio to care. It would probably cost them more to make a new cut than what they would gain from a lower cert. [:D]


I think the version of Die Hard 5 that Ireland has (which is a 15a) is the same version we got as a 12a so I think our system is just fine [:)]




SwozTheRevenge -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (22/2/2013 1:00:54 PM)

R18a




Overmind -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (22/2/2013 2:41:04 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: SwozTheRevenge

R18a



That would be a softcore-porn action movie .... not?

... Ill get my beer soon...[8|]




jackcarter -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (22/2/2013 9:54:36 PM)

its a small wonder that Prometheus didnt get cut to 12A for the UK

maybe Sir Ridley had something to do with that




Spiked -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (26/2/2013 2:13:11 PM)

Meh, just the way things are.




Meal -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (1/3/2013 2:00:33 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: farley1711


Im a huge movie fan...studied it at university,see movies 2 or 3 times a week, have subscribed to EMPIRE pretty much since issue one...and for the first time Ive felt to start a forum here. For years Empire have addressed issues around censorship, however they appear to be dropping the ball on confronting a far more insidious form of censorship...studio edits to secure the wretched 12a.Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the 12a, appreciateing that there needs to be something a little more flexible sat between a PG and the rigid 15 classification. However studios have now realised that sacrificing 3 or 4 minutes of footage can secure them a family friendly rating...and allow them to release the inevitable ('harder, longer cut' on blu ray). For an industry which was fearing for its life years ago, insitgating censorship on its own creativity is inexcusable. The rest of the world have an unct Die Hard 5, why don't we? Taken 2 was butchered, looking more like it was edited for a sunday afternoon showing on Ch5.
For the first time ever Im considering illegally downloading a movie from the states to see it uncut. I wont be going to the movies to see Die Hard, and will probably not want to see it once it arrives on BluRay - retruning the respect 20th Century Fox have paid me with their greed and cynicism.
Id also be interested in the legal standings, as Advertising Standards should sure be making studios detail where we are not 'buying' the full product. That may be my next stop...
And c'mon Empire...you are our publication, not the stuidios. Represent us, and confront the studios ... Im boycotting any studio censored movie from now on. We know they only listen when we hit them in their wallets...


Completely agree, farley. The trend of cutting films for lower ratings is, sadly, returning. Fortunately, it's not nearly as bad as back in the 80's and 90's and, most importantly, the uncut versions are USUALLY released for home-viewing. As long as I don't have to OWN the sanitised version, I'm OK.

That said, I wanted to watch Die Hard 5 in theatres and now I won't. No way I'm paying today's crazy ticket prices for some neutered version. I absolutely agree that the cuts information should be made VERY CLEAR. If there have been cuts, it should appear along with the consumer advice by the certificate, not be tucked away on the BBFC website, where even then it's somewhat ambiguous. As a consumer, the FIRST thing I want to know is whether I'm getting the real deal or the kidz club version.

This needs fixing. The problem comes down to who is responsible. Fox chose to cut the film, so it's their fault, right? Fine, but then you have to ask why it's always the UK that ends up with the kids version, while our European neighbours, Ireland included, always get uncut versions. I did a bit of digging on this, and it turns out that the BBFC takes money from the studios in exchange for telling them exactly what needs to be cut to secure the desired lower rating, whereas other classification bodies do just that - classify. It seems the BBFC have a little business on the side, helping the studios to get those profit-friendly ratings...

Is this really how our classification body should be behaving? Why can't they adopt the same classify-only policy of other countries and not get involved with the editing of a film? Should the BBFC, a government body designed to serve the British public, be coordinating with movie studios to deprive that public of uncensored footage? Does freedom of expression include the right of the public to see uncut films?

The BBFC are a much more transparent and accountable organisation these days, I think it's time they knew that people don't want to see snipped versions, and that the practice of cutting is making piracy all the more necessary for adult cinephiles.





Darth Marenghi -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (1/3/2013 3:47:51 PM)

quote:

ORIGINAL: Meal

Does freedom of expression include the right of the public to see uncut films?



Well, no. The creator of the film (20th Century Fox) is exercising their freedom of expression in choosing which cut of the film they want released in the UK. It's interested me that DH4 was PG-13'd in America, but then this one wasn't. Perhaps there was some blowback there that Fox listened to?

Going back to the idea of a 15A, some interesting comments from the BBFC at the end of this opinion piece:

http://www.denofgeek.com/movies/24471/is-it-time-for-a-15apg-15-rating




elab49 -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (1/3/2013 4:52:33 PM)

http://www.bbfc.co.uk/what-classification/guidelines-review-2013

You don't need to 'dig' to find out what the BBFC does - if someone asks them what would need to be cut to meet a rating, it's not exactly Watergate that that's one of their activities. It's a core part of the discussion between any ratings body and the studios - why did we get this rating. what do we need to do to change it?

Anyway - for those who have issues with the BBFc the survey above went live today. It'll be there for 6 weeks. So if you do have something constructive to say - have a blast [:)]




jonson -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (2/3/2013 9:40:51 AM)

I didn't realsie that 12's were dvd's and bluray, whereas 12A's were cinema.

I still find the whole 12A thing silly, It gives the parents responsibility on whether they deem the film suitable for under 12's. A lot of parent's now let their kids watch what they want, so why give them the choice? Surely that is the whole point of the BBFC, whether we like it or not, it decides on what age "we" should be allowed to view a film (especially as I would say 99% of the cinema viewers who take their kids have not even seen the film first to make that judgement)
Is it any different to having a sign on fag packets saying 16A, or on a bottle of whisky 18A?

I'd say bringing out a 15A is even more irresponsible, unless they have a minimum age (say 12) considering the kind of thing they are allowed in 15's nowadays (strong language and strong violence) should we really let parent's decide on whether they can take their 9 year olds?




elab49 -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (2/3/2013 10:08:22 AM)

I think it's because so many parents have complained that they can make the judgement about their child not some strange organisation - that one it clearly filed in the BBFC can't win category. What they do do is try to give the parent enough info to make the judgement with summary reasons for the certificate as well - what violence, swearing etc are in it.

My brother decided my nephew could see Skyfall. That's his decision knowing his son but also taking full note of the certificate. If BBFC had said absolutely 12 you have no choice in the matter? We'd get more over the top comments about censorship I think [:D]




Meal -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (2/3/2013 12:25:38 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

http://www.bbfc.co.uk/what-classification/guidelines-review-2013

You don't need to 'dig' to find out what the BBFC does - if someone asks them what would need to be cut to meet a rating, it's not exactly Watergate that that's one of their activities. It's a core part of the discussion between any ratings body and the studios - why did we get this rating. what do we need to do to change it?


If you read what I wrote, the 'digging' was done to discover that the BBFC gets paid by the studio to advise on cuts. This is problematic because the BBFC exists to serve the British public, but is taking money from studios to help them cut down films, leaving that public worse off.

quote:

Anyway - for those who have issues with the BBFc the survey above went live today. It'll be there for 6 weeks. So if you do have something constructive to say - have a blast [:)]


It's useless, and dodges all of these issues. The questions are completely controlled to focus on classification and the usual 12A confusion, completely ignoring anything to do with their involvement in having films cut for the UK public.






elab49 -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (2/3/2013 12:38:22 PM)

I don't really agree with that. The studios take marketing views - they could issue the films in any format they choose and take the appropriate certificate (few would be uncertified, so rare is that these days), so blaming the BBFC is a bit of a red herring. With Die Hard 5 it's quite clearly the studio that's faffing about here and, worryingly, seem to be doing so because they know they'll still get plenty of money on the big screen with younger viewers getting in while creaming in additional profit with a different cut in the home video market.

The reason I disputed the term 'digging' is because that particularly activity is perfectly transparent. And, again, it's not entirely fair to criticise the BBFC for it unless you are, and have evidence of, them giving more restrictive ratings for the sole purpose of a small fee for getting it reversed. That is corruption and in breach of the authority they were given under the Video Recordings Act so seems something of an extreme accusation.

What that part of their activities does is simply this - the distributor, for some reason, normally money, wants a particular certificate (eg a 12a rather than a 15 to increase the market). However, the product they have submitted would not get that certificate. So the BBFC tells them why. Which is, lets be fair here, exactly what they'd be publishing transparently on the website anyway - all this might do, in theory, is save the distrubutor two submission fees. There's nothing sinister about it. Which is why the BBFC are entirely open about their activities. And it might also lead to a less chopped up version of the film than a distributor who decides up front what they need to cut themselves so submit only a version they've already taken chunks out of - that seems to happen quite often as we can see the difference between the UK and US cuts nowadays.




Meal -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (10/3/2013 1:50:11 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

I don't really agree with that. The studios take marketing views - they could issue the films in any format they choose and take the appropriate certificate (few would be uncertified, so rare is that these days), so blaming the BBFC is a bit of a red herring. With Die Hard 5 it's quite clearly the studio that's faffing about here and, worryingly, seem to be doing so because they know they'll still get plenty of money on the big screen with younger viewers getting in while creaming in additional profit with a different cut in the home video market.

Yes, the studio is to blame, but they would have released the film uncut in the UK (as they did in every other country) were it not for the BBFC's cuts advice service, which provides a risk-free solution to getting that more profit-friendly 12A.

quote:

The reason I disputed the term 'digging' is because that particularly activity is perfectly transparent.

As explained, that particular activity is not what I had to go 'digging' for, I had to 'dig' to discover they were taking money from the studio to advise on cuts - which they conveniently kept quiet about.


quote:

And, again, it's not entirely fair to criticise the BBFC for it unless you are, and have evidence of, them giving more restrictive ratings for the sole purpose of a small fee for getting it reversed. That is corruption and in breach of the authority they were given under the Video Recordings Act so seems something of an extreme accusation.

I'm not accusing them of any of that. I'm simply pointing out that the BBFC's cuts advice service is leaving UK cinemas full of cut films, while classification bodies across the rest of Europe, Canada, Mexico and Australia which DON'T off this service to studios DON'T get cut films. Are you happy to have these cut films or would you rather a system more like these other countries?

quote:

What that part of their activities does is simply this - the distributor, for some reason, normally money, wants a particular certificate (eg a 12a rather than a 15 to increase the market). However, the product they have submitted would not get that certificate. So the BBFC tells them why. Which is, lets be fair here, exactly what they'd be publishing transparently on the website anyway - all this might do, in theory, is save the distrubutor two submission fees. There's nothing sinister about it. Which is why the BBFC are entirely open about their activities.

Not only that, the BBFC tells them precisely what to cut to achieve a lower certificate, for a fee, unlike other European countries, which is why they get uncut films and the UK gets cut films.

quote:

And it might also lead to a less chopped up version of the film than a distributor who decides up front what they need to cut themselves so submit only a version they've already taken chunks out of - that seems to happen quite often as we can see the difference between the UK and US cuts nowadays.

The UK needs to be compared to other countries in the 'international market', not the US, because that's the treatment we would get if we adopted the systems of those countries, ie. uncut films.





Darth Marenghi -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (10/3/2013 5:12:53 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Meal


quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

I don't really agree with that. The studios take marketing views - they could issue the films in any format they choose and take the appropriate certificate (few would be uncertified, so rare is that these days), so blaming the BBFC is a bit of a red herring. With Die Hard 5 it's quite clearly the studio that's faffing about here and, worryingly, seem to be doing so because they know they'll still get plenty of money on the big screen with younger viewers getting in while creaming in additional profit with a different cut in the home video market.

Yes, the studio is to blame, but they would have released the film uncut in the UK (as they did in every other country) were it not for the BBFC's cuts advice service, which provides a risk-free solution to getting that more profit-friendly 12A.




This really wouldn't have happened. Fox wanted that 12A rating for DH5 no matter what. If there was no consultation service they would have made their own guesses on what needed to be cut and submitted that through the certification process. Compared to the extra profits they'd apparently make from a 12A film, this would be a trivial cost.




Meal -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (10/3/2013 6:58:41 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Darth Marenghi


quote:

ORIGINAL: Meal


quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

I don't really agree with that. The studios take marketing views - they could issue the films in any format they choose and take the appropriate certificate (few would be uncertified, so rare is that these days), so blaming the BBFC is a bit of a red herring. With Die Hard 5 it's quite clearly the studio that's faffing about here and, worryingly, seem to be doing so because they know they'll still get plenty of money on the big screen with younger viewers getting in while creaming in additional profit with a different cut in the home video market.

Yes, the studio is to blame, but they would have released the film uncut in the UK (as they did in every other country) were it not for the BBFC's cuts advice service, which provides a risk-free solution to getting that more profit-friendly 12A.




This really wouldn't have happened. Fox wanted that 12A rating for DH5 no matter what. If there was no consultation service they would have made their own guesses on what needed to be cut and submitted that through the certification process. Compared to the extra profits they'd apparently make from a 12A film, this would be a trivial cost.


Why didn't they cut down for lower certificates in other countries then?






Darth Marenghi -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (10/3/2013 7:49:31 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Meal


quote:

ORIGINAL: Darth Marenghi


quote:

ORIGINAL: Meal


quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

I don't really agree with that. The studios take marketing views - they could issue the films in any format they choose and take the appropriate certificate (few would be uncertified, so rare is that these days), so blaming the BBFC is a bit of a red herring. With Die Hard 5 it's quite clearly the studio that's faffing about here and, worryingly, seem to be doing so because they know they'll still get plenty of money on the big screen with younger viewers getting in while creaming in additional profit with a different cut in the home video market.

Yes, the studio is to blame, but they would have released the film uncut in the UK (as they did in every other country) were it not for the BBFC's cuts advice service, which provides a risk-free solution to getting that more profit-friendly 12A.




This really wouldn't have happened. Fox wanted that 12A rating for DH5 no matter what. If there was no consultation service they would have made their own guesses on what needed to be cut and submitted that through the certification process. Compared to the extra profits they'd apparently make from a 12A film, this would be a trivial cost.


Why didn't they cut down for lower certificates in other countries then?



Because there's no profit incentive for them to do so. They'll have researched all of this stuff.




Meal -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (11/3/2013 2:42:10 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Darth Marenghi


quote:

ORIGINAL: Meal


quote:

ORIGINAL: Darth Marenghi


quote:

ORIGINAL: Meal


quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

I don't really agree with that. The studios take marketing views - they could issue the films in any format they choose and take the appropriate certificate (few would be uncertified, so rare is that these days), so blaming the BBFC is a bit of a red herring. With Die Hard 5 it's quite clearly the studio that's faffing about here and, worryingly, seem to be doing so because they know they'll still get plenty of money on the big screen with younger viewers getting in while creaming in additional profit with a different cut in the home video market.

Yes, the studio is to blame, but they would have released the film uncut in the UK (as they did in every other country) were it not for the BBFC's cuts advice service, which provides a risk-free solution to getting that more profit-friendly 12A.




This really wouldn't have happened. Fox wanted that 12A rating for DH5 no matter what. If there was no consultation service they would have made their own guesses on what needed to be cut and submitted that through the certification process. Compared to the extra profits they'd apparently make from a 12A film, this would be a trivial cost.


Why didn't they cut down for lower certificates in other countries then?



Because there's no profit incentive for them to do so. They'll have researched all of this stuff.


There's no profit incentive because, without a cuts advice service like the BBFC's, they would be making stabs in the dark with their cuts, not knowing whether it's worthwhile as release date approaches. It's easier to release it uncut and accept whatever certificate the rating board decides. That's the system the UK should have.






Shifty Bench -> RE: STUDIO CENSORSHIP - THE WRETCHED 12A (11/3/2013 3:33:43 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: Meal
It's easier to release it uncut and accept whatever certificate the rating board decides. That's the system the UK should have.


It kind of is, though. Fox were offered an uncut 15 certificate which is what the film deserved. It was their choice not to release it uncut, it was their choice not to accept the certificate the BBFC decided was suitable.




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