FYI for everyone following this situation -- this is the press release issued by the MPAA yesterday regarding the ratings process for "CAPTIVITY".
Although this is a victory for us -- we're definitely being heard -- it's also only an interim step. It matters that we continue to be heard on this issue, and continue making our arguments to the MPAA as the process moves forward.
Sent: Thursday, March 29, 2007 1:40 PM
Subject: **MPAA SUSPENDS RATING OF AFTER DARK FILMS’ "CAPTIVITY"
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, March 29, 2007
MPAA SUSPENDS RATING
OF AFTER DARK FILMS’ “CAPTIVITY”
Los Angeles – The Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) today issued a month-long suspension of the ratings process for After Dark Films’ upcoming release “Captivity.” The action comes in response to After Dark’s prominent display in both Los Angeles and New York of advertising that the MPAA had explicitly disapproved as inappropriate for general public viewing. The production company and its distributors will also be required to clear not only all promotional materials but also the locations and venues of all advertising buys relating to the film, marking the first time that sanction has been imposed by the MPAA.
“The sanctions in this case are severe because this was an unacceptable and flagrant violation of MPAA rules and procedures,” said Marilyn Gordon, Senior Vice President of Advertising. “After Dark Films presented their ads for approval, as all companies are required to do if they wish to receive an MPAA rating. However, their ads were summarily rejected for their graphic depiction of a woman’s torture and death. Yet After Dark proceeded to post them on billboards anyway, and these ads appeared in some of the most prominent public locations in Los Angeles and New York . It is now up to After Dark Films to restore good faith with the MPAA.”
All films that seek an MPAA rating are required to clear with the MPAA all promotional materials that will be publicly displayed, whether in print, on television, in theaters or online. “MPAA reviews tens of thousands of promotional materials each year,” Gordon added. “Our rules are important to movie-goers generally and parents in particular. The good news is that - as disturbing as this case has been - it marks a rare instance where a company has acted in such a clear and direct violation of our rules. The overwhelming majority of companies and filmmakers understand, support and abide by MPAA rules and procedures.”
As a result of the ruling, “Captivity” will not be eligible for consideration by the ratings board until on or after May 1, 2007 and will be given no priority scheduling at that time.
About the MPAA
The Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) serves as the voice and advocate of the American motion picture, home video and television industries from its offices in Los Angeles and Washington , D.C. Its members include: Buena Vista Pictures Distribution; Paramount Pictures; Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc.; Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation; Universal City Studios LLLP; and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.