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show smoke in the movies and get an R rating? Yeah, right

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show smoke in the movies and get an R rating? Yeah, right

Old 05-11-07, 12:10 AM
  #101  
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I came across this earlier tonight:

http://www.chud.com/index.php?type=news&id=10203

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/...aaf2487abdd48b

By Carl DiOrio

May 11, 2007
Filmmakers now might get an R rating as a thank you for smoking.

The MPAA said Thursday that its rating board will consider film depictions of smoking among the criteria for assigning movie ratings. Anti-tobacco activists have been pressing for an automatic R rating for films with smoking scenes, but MPAA chairman and CEO Dan Glickman rejected the proposal for a more nuanced approach.

"The MPAA film rating system has existed for nearly 40 years as an educational tool for parents to assist them in making decisions about what movies are appropriate for their children," Glickman said. "It is a system that is designed to evolve alongside modern parental concerns."

In line with that evolution, the MPAA ratings board "will now consider smoking as a factor among many other factors, including violence, sexual situations and language, in the rating of films," he said.

"Clearly, smoking is increasingly an unacceptable behavior in our society," Glickman said. "There is broad awareness of smoking as a unique public health concern due to nicotine's highly addictive nature, and no parent wants their child to take up the habit. The appropriate response of the rating system is to give more information to parents on this issue."

Glickman described the move as an extension of the MPAA's practice of factoring underage smoking into the rating of films. The ratings board will ask three questions, he said:

Is the smoking pervasive?

Does the film glamorize smoking?

Is there a historic or other mitigating context?

Also, when a film's rating is affected by the depiction of smoking, the rating will include such phrases as "glamorized smoking" or "pervasive smoking."


In a related announcement, the MPAA and the Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers said they were joining Hollywood Unfiltered, a smoking-awareness health initiative aimed at educating members of the industry about the potential harm from onscreen glamorizing of smoking. The project is an initiative of the Entertainment Industry Foundation, a nonprofit group dedicated to education, health and social issues.

"Some have called for a mandatory R rating on all films that contain any smoking," Glickman said. "We do not believe such a step would further the specific goal of providing information to parents on this issue. Unfortunately, the debate on this extreme proposal has become heavily politicized, and many inaccurate statements have been made. While those pushing this proposal are no doubt well-intentioned, it is important that there is an accurate understanding of the declining prevalence of smoking in non-R-rated films."

From July 2004-July 2006, the percentage of films that included "even a fleeting glimpse of smoking" dropped from 60% to 52%, and 75% of those fetched an R rating for other factors, he said.

The DGA was among several organizations issuing statements of support for the MPAA moves.

"The DGA supports the MPAA's announced enhancements to the ratings system and applauds their effort to provide parents with increased information on the depiction of smoking in movies," the guild said. "We appreciate that they, like us, are working to find the delicate balance between addressing important health concerns and safeguarding free expression."

SAG also gave a statement of support.

"As advocates for both creative rights and child-protection legislation, we believe this is a reasonable approach to deal with a serious health issue," SAG deputy national executive director Pamm Fair said.


American Cancer Society CEO John Seffrin said he was pleased by the MPAA's "substantive effort to eliminate tobacco use as a cause of death and disability."

Seffrin cited "evidence that children and youth are particularly vulnerable to the images of tobacco use on movie screens."

But not all the reaction was rosy.

American Legacy Foundation said the new MPAA ratings policy "falls short and fails to implement the meaningful recommendations set forth by numerous organizations." Washington-based ALF states its mission as being "dedicated to a world where young people reject tobacco and anyone can quit."

Hollywood has been under increasing pressure to take steps to ease the purported effect of entertainment content in several areas, from smoking to child obesity. Next week on Capitol Hill, the Senate Commerce Committee begins its examination of the effect violent content has on children.

Sen. John Rockefeller, D-W.Va., is expected to introduce legislation giving the FCC the power to regulate such content -- much as it does indecent content on television. In April, the FCC approved a report on TV violence that asked lawmakers for the requisite enforcement powers.

A Senate-FCC industry task force has been convened to identify ways of forcing content producers to encourage children to eat healthy foods.

Meanwhile, the MPAA's announcement on smoking comes the day after Jack Valenti, longtime head of the MPAA and the architect of its movie-ratings system, was buried in Arlington Cemetery. In responding to any suggestions that the MPAA ratings were less than perfect, Valenti would regularly observe that the ratings could be amended but should never be discarded.

"(P)arents are very clear to us that they -- not the industry and certainly not the government -- should determine what is appropriate viewing for their kids," Glickman said Thursday. "What they want is information, and that is the action we are now taking."

Brooks Boliek in Washington contributed to this report.

Last edited by BrentLumkin; 05-11-07 at 12:15 AM.
Old 05-11-07, 12:14 AM
  #102  
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A reasonable acknowledgement of people's concerns while not jumping the gun.
Old 05-11-07, 12:28 AM
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Good, and let's make sure we don't glamorize inter-racial marriage while we're at it.
Old 05-11-07, 02:28 AM
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Originally Posted by DeputyDave
Good, and let's make sure we don't glamorize inter-racial marriage while we're at it.
Come on. You have to be a certain age to smoke, you have to be a certain age to drink. I think this is a reasonably unpolitical way to acknowledge a large amount of smoking in a movie aimed at teenagers or something that is similar to how the MPAA monitors drinking in movies in the rating.
Old 05-11-07, 03:02 AM
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What do you mean by "glamorizing" smoking? If it means having someone come up to a smoker and say, "Wow, you look so cool with that cigarette. Letís screw." Then I'll agree with you (not because of any censorship issues, but because itís simply bad dialogue).

If it means not portraying life as it is, then I will never get behind it. I have two children and I have told them they shouldn't smoke and the reasons why. If seeing a movie makes them smoke, then I have a lot more to worry about and should restrict them from seeing ANY movie with ANY bad influences in them.

Man, anti-smoking Nazis annoy me more than PETA and door-to-door religion pushers combined.
Old 05-11-07, 07:41 AM
  #106  
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Originally Posted by DeputyDave
I have two children and I have told them they shouldn't smoke and the reasons why. If seeing a movie makes them smoke, then I have a lot more to worry about and should restrict them from seeing ANY movie with ANY bad influences in them.
How DARE you take parental responsibility for your own children!
Old 05-11-07, 07:47 AM
  #107  
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Looking forward to an R rated Grease
Old 05-11-07, 10:25 AM
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If it means not portraying life as it is, then I will never get behind it. I have two children and I have told them they shouldn't smoke and the reasons why.
Hold on there, that sounds like Parental Guidance to me! That gives me an idea...
Old 05-11-07, 10:32 AM
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There was a booth at Family Values last year with petitions pushing this. I told them that I don't support any kind of censorship. I'm very anti-smoking (I lost family members due to their smoking addictions) but this whole debate is ridiculus. Writers and directors should not bow down just to avoid an R rating.
Old 05-11-07, 10:43 AM
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This is another problem with the R rating. You can have someone say F*** a couple times and get an R rating. You alot of nudity and gratuitis sex and get the same rating. You have people getting sliced up and bludgened you get that same rating. Now you want depictions of smoking get the same rating as Hostile. The R rating is way too broad. I used to work in a movie theatre and we'd have parents say that they let there kids watch R rated movies all the time because there isn't really anything 'that bad' in them. Then when they see something 'that bad' they freak.

It would be like... I let my child see R rated movies all the time all you need to get an R rating is show someone smoking.
Old 05-11-07, 11:42 AM
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I think people are still blowing this out of proportion. Imagine a movie where there is no questionable content except teens drinking. You know how much drinking that movie would have to contain to jump from a PG-13 to an R? It's not like smoking is going to be a hugely impactful target in the MPAA's book, which is why they flatly refused to automatically rate movies with smoking an R == I agree entirely, THAT would be a wholly unreasonable thing to do. But as I said before, it sounds like it is more an acknowledgement of content -- there will be the descriptors -- but I HIGHLY doubt any movie's rating is going to change solely on the basis of smoking in the movie.

Also, I would characterize glamorizing smoking as characters who "need" to have a smoke throughout the movie, have a favorite brand that gets focused on, etc. etc.
Old 05-11-07, 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Rypro 525
oh, I didn't know that casablanca would now be an R rating?

No kidding. People smoked like maniacs in movies back then.........
Old 05-11-07, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by droidguy1119
Come on. You have to be a certain age to smoke, you have to be a certain age to drink.
And you have to be a certain age to buy a gun. What's more, it's actually illegal to assault or kill someone, but that doesn't necessarily mean the film gets an R-rating for it.
Old 05-11-07, 02:39 PM
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A lot of people here seem to be overreacting to this. I've never seen anyone from the rating board talk about re-rating old movies, or not take the context of smoking into consideration.

I found this quote in another article.

Glickman (MPAA Chairman)said a mandatory R rating for smoking would not "further the specific goal of providing information to parents on this issue."



If rated today, a film such as 2005's 'Good Night, and Good Luck,' about chain-smoking newsman Edward R. Murrow, would have carried a "pervasive smoking" tag but probably would have retained its PG rating because of its historical context in the 1950s, Graves said.


http://entertainment.channels.aolsvc...11103509990005


Then again, I guess I'm over-reacting too, since I live in Canada, so what the hell should I care about the American ratings.
Old 05-12-07, 11:30 AM
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I don't see why this is an issue. Characters don't smoke in movies anymore anyway.
Old 05-12-07, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by PopcornTreeCt
Characters don't smoke in movies anymore anyway.
i am against any kind of silly socio-editing just to give the uptight parents of America a false sense of security, but there's lots of smoking in movies all the time.

The Departed, or Dreamgirls... or Flags Of Our Fathers, or Hellboy or Hot Fuzz or The Illusionist or Kill Bill or Lords Of Dogtown or Munich or Rocky Balboa, etc...
Old 05-12-07, 12:28 PM
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Old 05-12-07, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by An4h0ny
i am against any kind of silly socio-editing just to give the uptight parents of America a false sense of security, but there's lots of smoking in movies all the time.

The Departed, or Dreamgirls... or Flags Of Our Fathers, or Hellboy or Hot Fuzz or The Illusionist or Kill Bill or Lords Of Dogtown or Munich or Rocky Balboa, etc...
I agree with that. I just think there are bigger issues with the MPAA then this smoking thing. The bigger problem is how much power the MPAA has over Hollywood's writers, directors, and producers. But I suppose that's not something we can verbally debate.
Old 05-13-07, 06:35 PM
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This is nothing but sheer utter PC stupidity.
Old 05-16-07, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Red Dog
This is nothing but sheer utter PC stupidity.
Agreed - strong opposition to this stupid notion.

While we're at it, both alcohol and speeding are impressionable on teens and may lead to dire health issues...

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