Two upcoming films, Black Swan and Love and Other Drugs, have been banned by the censors in the UAE for “excessive sexual content”, tabloid! has learned.
“Both these movies have been banned because of excessive sexual content,” said Mohammad Naser, the official responsible for cinemas at Dubai’s censorship department.
He said that movies sent to the department for censorship are approved, edited or banned. “When we find that the amount of editing required takes a big part of the movie, we conclude that there is no point in releasing it,” he said.
Naser said that in one of the two films the viewer would have been left with 25 per cent of the film had it been released after editing.
“Upon reviewing a film, the censorship department makes a decision, writes it in a report and hands the report to the distributors,” said Naser.
Black Swan stars Natalie Portman as a troubled ballet dancer, while Love and Other Drugs is a romantic comedy starring Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal.
Daniela Yordanova, brand manager of 20th Century Fox for the Middle East at Empire International - Gulf, which distributes the films, said that her company was notified that both films were banned in the UAE.
“They usually ban films because of the content and the name,” she said, citing Sex and the City as an example. “If the censoring involves just a scene then they will cut it and approve it, but if there’s a lot of censoring needed they ban the film,” she said.
She added, however, that both films will be released in other Middle Eastern markets such as Lebanon.