Local filmmaker Erma Fatima, who made her first foray into directing in 1999, was originally set to showcase her latest movie titled “Pesan Dari Tuhan” on Sunday night via Sistem Television Berhad (TV3).
However, she decided to pull the movie off after TV3 requested her to cut some scenes that were deemed “politically sensitive”.
The director told Malay Mail Online over the phone that she was forced to pull movie off after being told to cut away a majority of the scenes, specifically those on the election of the village head.
Her decision to pull the movie off made waves across social media, where some users assumed that the movie was banned and displayed their dissatisfaction. Some users also said that they were not surprised by such action, adding that the local film industry will not go far due to such censorship.
However, the director clarified that the movie “was not banned”, adding that the network will only broadcast her film if she was willing to cut some scenes. She was expected to exclude “around 30 to 40 cuts”. As the movie centres on the lives of people whose village was hit by flood, she added, “But I do not agree (to cut), so I choose not to air it”.
Bans #PesanDariTuhan ,a movie that depicts real issues in our soc. Funds films that revise history. Allows film that glorifies paedophiles.
— Faizal Hamssin (@faizalhamssin) June 28, 2015
Show us #PesanDariTuhan , all this ridiculous censorship is stifling creativity. Butthurt duduk dalam gua lah.
— Fathan (@mfathan25) June 28, 2015
This isn’t the first time a local film was suspended as a 2013 film titled “New Village” was banned after being accused of “glorifying communism”. The film, which was reviewed by Home Ministry, was first reviewed by Film Censorship Board (LPF). According to The Star Online, the ministry revealed in a written response to DAP’s Nga Kor Ming that the film was still banned as it “appeared to aimed at altering historical facts”.
A number of international films such as “Fifty Shades of Grey” and “Zoolander” were also banned in Malaysia as the former contained unnatural and “sadistic” sex scenes while the latter contained “offensive jokes about the country”.
What do you think of the censorship? Do you think that our local film industry will go far if the films are being heavily censored like this? Share your thoughts in the comments box below.
Source: The Malay Mail Online