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From 18 to 15 With the Help of the Ratings Board

The year 2014 may end soon but the days before Christmas are still dominated by bad censorship news when looking at the UK. It seems almost redundant which actor stars in a film or whether the plot in itself already should attract a large audience. Several distributors in England don't seem to have faith in the British cinemagoers and decide to cut the rating down in order to (theoretically) reach a larger customer base. That increases the number of films that are (in one aspect) partly robbed of their quality in order to generate more money. Sounds odd but has become an industry standard by now.

After the news broke that Taken 3 is also affected by this practice, it is quickly followed by Kingsman: The Secret Service. As the trailer already suggests, the action comedy by Kick Ass director Matthew Vaughn seems to be rather turbulent and the BBFC tended to give it the 18 rating. Too high for the distributor, though:

This film was originally seen for advice in an unfinished version. The company was informed the film was likely to be classified 18, but that their requested 15 could be achieved by making some reductions in scenes of violence. When the finished version was submitted for formal classification, reductions had been made and the film was passed 15.

So again, the BBFC's advice was used to lower the rating to 15 years for the theatrical release of the film in UK cinemas. And again the question has to be asked what that could possibly mean for releases in the rest of the world. Will they be implemented universally? Will they stay in UK cinemas only? Will they also find their way onto the later DVD/Blu-ray releases or will they be reversed for that occasion? It will take a while before those questions can be answered but we'll be all over it.

If you still want to check it out in the UK, you can do so in cinemas starting February 12th, 2015.

Release: Dec 22, 2014 - Author: Mike Lowrey - Translator: Mike Lowrey

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