April 23, 2014

Tag Archives: legal advisor

The Weinstein Company Accepts NC-17 Rating on Blue Valentine in Order to Appeal It

hollywoodnews.com: In response to the ratings given to two of its upcoming films, The Weinstein Company (TWC) announced today that it has engaged a formidable legal team to challenge the NC-17 rating for ‘BLUE VALENTINE’ and the R rating for ‘THE KING’S SPEECH’ given by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), according to TWC Co-Chair Harvey Weinstein.
“While we respect the MPAA, I think we can all agree that we are living with an outdated ratings system that gives torture porn, horror and ultraviolent films the same rating as films with so-called inappropriate language,” explains Weinstein.
In mounting the challenge, TWC has assembled a team of top attorneys including David Boies, who serves as legal advisor on both films, Bert Fields, who is overseeing the appeal for ‘THE KING’S SPEECH,’ and Alan R. Friedman, the lead attorney for ‘BLUE VALENTINE.’
‘THE KING’S SPEECH’ drew an R rating due to its multiple occurrences of strong language, even though it is used in a non-aggressive, non-sexual, therapeutic way. Director Tom Hooper states, “I hope that language can be judged by its context just as violence is currently judged in context. The f-word in ‘The King’s Speech’ is not being used in its sexual sense, or in its aggressive sense, but as a release mechanism to help a man overcome a stammer in the context of speech therapy, in a scene that is also very funny. This was a technique that David Seidler, the writer, encountered as a boy in the 1940s – discovering he didn’t stammer on curse words was hugely helpful to him overcoming his speech problems. Fortunately in the UK we have been granted a 12A, and the on screen certificate will explain that there is some bad language “used in the context of speech therapy”. I hope that in the light of this context the R rating for the movie can be reconsidered.”
Prompted by the decision from the British Board of Film Classification to lower the rating of ‘THE KING’S SPEECH’ to 12A, the equivalent of our PG-13, and to use the specific warning: “Contains strong language in a speech therapist context,” as well as the outcry from parents, teens and educators who have already seen the film, TWC has requested what is referred to as a Special Hearing with the MPAA. The Special Hearing is necessary because the film is now within 25 business days of its theatrical [...]