There is a lot of harsh content in David Fincher's The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. There are scenes of brutal violence, rape, torture, nudity and everything else that the MPAA tries to shield from us on a daily basis. Somewhat surprisingly, though, the ratings board never even threatened to slap the movie with the dreaded NC-17, which would have forced the director to make cuts and edits that weren't part of his original vision. But while things worked out great here in the United States, the folks over in India aren't seeing the movie in the same light and now they won't be seeing the movie at all.
Though the film was originally going to be released in the country this month, it was delayed until February when the India's Central Board of Film Certification (also known as the Censor Board - and that's not me being glib) decided that the movie contained too much nudity - five scenes to be exact. Now, according to Variety, distribution has been cancelled entirely because David Fincher refuses to cut the film. A spokesperson for Columbia Pictures in India said, "The Censor Board has adjudged the film unsuitable for public viewing in its unaltered form and, while we are committed to maintaining and protecting the vision of the director, we will, as always, respect the guidelines set by the board." The trade says that normally nude scenes are simply blurred out, but the Censor Board specifically asked that scenes be cut out.
This is artistic integrity at its best. David Fincher made The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo the way that he meant it to be seen and it's great to hear that the studio has his back. It's a shame that the people of India won't be able to see the movie, but perhaps they will find access to it another way.
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Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.