Malaysian Filmmakers, Academics Slam Expanded Censorship Rules: ‘Filmmaking is Now a Dangerous Vocation’

Filmmakers in Malaysia are predicting more arrests and criminal investigations if the government pushes through proposed guidelines to the country’s censorship system and expands the remit of the Film Censorship Board (LFP).

(Variety) – Malaysia has in recent years gained itself an intolerant reputation after numerous bans or restrictions on Hollywood and Asian films that have been widely released elsewhere. These have included Pixar’s “Buzz Lightyear” and Marvel’s “Thor: love and Thunder,” apparently due to their LGBT subplots or characters, and 2017 Indian blockbuster “Padmaavat” on religious grounds.

But the Freedom Film Network says that by expanding film censorship the government is undermining the development of the local, Malaysian, film industry that authorities proclaim to support.

“Filmmaking is now a dangerous vocation in Malaysia and far from the internationally competitive industry the Prime Minister imagines,” the organization said this week in an open letter. “With the new LPF guidelines we could potentially see an increase in arrests and investigations.”

Government is proposing to expand the scope of the LPF and to give national guidelines a more pro-Islamic stance.

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