Lesbians cut from Without Men in Spain
I'm a little bit uncertain about what is exactly going on here with this story, but it appears that scenes starring Eva Longoria kissing another woman (and perhaps not much more considering the film we're talking about) have been edited out of the Spanish release of the film Without Men which has led to a bit of controversy.
To me the controversy should be more along the lines of why would anyone bother to remove it, after all while the film is R rated in America it's a mere MA15+ in Australia, it stars Eva Longoria and Christian Slater, and it's a comedy.
Just to put things in perspective, Australia's MA15+ certificate means the following:
Contains material that is considered unsuitable for exhibition by persons under the age of 15. Persons under said age may only legally purchase or exhibit MA15+ rated content under the supervision of an adult guardian. This is a legally restricted category.
Whereas America's R rating means:
Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.
Now while we would expect the MPAA to be all over this like a blinkered, Victorian, religiously strong parenting group, they are allowing under seventeen's to see it with an adult, and the Australian board are saying that under fifteen year olds need to be accompanied by an adult, which means it's not that bad.
With Eva Longoria and Christian Slater starring and Without Men slated as a comedy, an adaptation of the James Canon novel, it doesn't seem like it's going to be filled with hot, steamy sexual scenes, and anything Longoria is involved with will surely be teasing and suggestive more than anything, she's not known for heavily sexual roles.
Yet the AFP through The Hollywood Reporter are saying that the Spanish distributor of the film have cut out lesbian scenes from the film which has prompted the Barcelona International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival to drop the film from its programme out of protest.
Surprisingly it's not the fact that the scenes that have been cut are about lesbians that are causing the festival the biggest concern, but more the fact that a distributor has made the cuts.
"We received a statement from the distributor in Spain saying that when the film premieres it will have the lesbian scenes removed...We are very angry that a distributor can modify the content of a film...The audience will not understand the film, because all the lesbian scenes are cut out…It is unbelievable in the year 2011."
Wait, all the lesbian scenes? Okay that is rather troubling. First that the story suggests the distributor has made the cuts without permission of the film-makers and secondly that all the lesbian scenes have been removed from a film that is called "Without Men" and talks about a society of women living without any, you guessed it, men.
It does seem that whatever the quality of the film it would have a huge impact on the story itself. I haven't read the story but it does seem as though it is featured as part of some of the characters development.
This is one view at the moment and we have no official word from the distributors, film-makers or anyone other than the festival director Xavier Daniel.
However I find it unbelievable that all the lesbian scenes are being removed, are Spanish people going to be so offended by that? From what I can tell from audience comments there's nothing that could upset anyone, kissing, romanticism, some eroticism and somewhere, some comedy.
To be fair the trailer does look awful, and maybe this is just to drum up some publicity about the film, but it just seems the wrong way to do it. Removing the lesbian scenes when there appear to be other similar heterosexual scenes sends a very strong message.
Here's the trailer for Without Men, with kissing and topless men, just to remind you how evil and corrupting it is. I mean that in the scene of evil and corrupting against comedy.