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  BBFC Podcast 21...

John Trevelyan


Link Here 10th June 2014
john trevelyan The BBFC latest podcast is well worth a listen with a brief but interesting programme about the impact of John Trevelyan. He was the chief censor during the massive society upheavals of the 1960s.

 

 Offsite Article: Call Yourself A Fan? Lousy Sales And Internet Piracy!...


Link Here 1st May 2014  full story: VRA Exempt...Video Recordings (Exemption from Classification) Bill
Exempt symbols Pooch considers the market economics of charging BBFC fees for DVD extras and of internet piracy

See article from cinema-extreme.blogspot.co.uk

 

 Offsite Article: No Orchids for Miss Blandish...


Link Here 30th April 2014
No Orchids Miss Blandish DVD BBFC's latest case studies outlines the censorship history of the 1948 film by St. John L. Clowes

See article from bbfc.co.uk

 

 Extract: Bloody Kids...

The BBFC archive reveals that the original Carrie was considered about a 16 rating for aggressive teasing


Link Here 15th April 2014

Carrie Rage Double Pack DVD Carrie was submitted to the BBFC for classification in November 1976. Language, implied off-screen sexual activity and the cruelty of the early bullying scenes kept the film out of the AA category (over 14s) and placed it in the higher X certificate (over 18s), although the examiner report observes it would be a perfect film for a 16-year-old-category .

...Read the full article

 

 Update: Extra fees that will suffocate small UK film distributors...

Film critic writes open letter to Maria Miller asking about unfair extra expenses.


Link Here 3rd April 2014  full story: VRA Exempt...Video Recordings (Exemption from Classification) Bill

maria miller To: Maria Miller, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.

Dear Ms. Miller,
Please forgive this open letter; it's an ungainly form of communication but I approached your department for an interview and didn't hear back. So...

You might not realise it but the Department of Culture, Media and Sport has undertaken a course of action that puts a number of small businesses at direct risk. Right now, Britain has some of the most exciting and inventive independent DVD labels in the world, companies doing everything from producing definitive editions of art-house classics to rescuing the forgotten treasures of British film.

The sheer quality of their work has made them indispensable to discerning viewers around the globe. Hell, if you want a recommendation, just ask the Prime Minister -- those Borgen box-sets he's so fond of are released by Arrow Films , one of our very best.

All that's under threat because of new regulations from the DCMS.

Let me explain: as it stands, the Video Recordings Act 1984 exempts certain types of material -- including documentary articles -- from the scrutiny of the British Board of Film Classification (an organisation, it's important to note, that charges heftily for its services).

Since most DVD extras -- the featurettes, interviews and visual essays that so often supplement the main feature -- are classed as 'documentaries', independent DVD labels can create high-quality special editions stuffed to the gunnels with extra material without incurring the prohibitive BBFC costs.

That's all going to change. The VRA is being amended to remove certain of the existing exemptions. While some material will remain free from classification, the changes are profound enough to have independent DVD labels extremely worried.

You're no doubt aware that all labels are facing huge problems from online piracy -- if a film can be illegally grabbed for free, why buy it? Well, a lavish suite of DVD extras is a damn good incentive to slap down the cash. But additional BBFC costs will place a huge strain on already tight budgets: this means fewer extras will be produced. Inevitably, some labels will go to the wall -- as a direct result of Government legislation.

It's important to note that these problems are unintentional: these changes are a response to parental pressure to do something about saucy music videos. Targeting physical media, though, seems a curiously toothless response in the age of YouTube: these changes look set to harm independent DVD labels and do nothing about the issue you're ostensibly trying to address.

According to the documents that lay out these changes, they were the result of a detailed consultation. However, none of the labels I have spoken to were even aware of the changes until very recently. I must ask: did the DCMS consult with ANY independent labels about the changes?

Given the impact these changes will have on businesses, I hope you'll reconsider the changes to the VRA, to prevent unintended damage. It also seems worth asking if you are prepared to meet representatives of the independent DVD labels and hear their concerns directly. Ask them nicely and they might even give you some of their discs. Then you can see for yourself just how good they are and why it would be such a loss if any went under. If you want any recommendations, I'm happy to oblige.

Yours etc.
James Oliver

 

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