Inxeba producers appeal X18 reclassification
THE producers of the controversial local movie Inxeba – The Wound appealed to the North Gauteng High Court yesterday to have the film’s X18 reclassification reverted to the initial rating of 16SNL.
Earlier this month, the producers, Elias Ribeiro and John Trengove, lodged an appeal arguing that the banning of the movie infringed on their right to freedom of expression and further perpetuated homophobia and bigotry in society.
Disputing arguments by the Tribunal Appeal Board that the film had no artistic and dramatic merit, the producers’ lawyer Steven Budlender argued that the film had won more than 20 awards locally and internationally with the most recent being the South African Film and Television Awards (Saftas) on Saturday, where it bagged six awards.
The court heard arguments from the film’s producers and activism groups, Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa and the Man and Boy Foundation.
Presiding judge Joseph Raulinga then asked the producers if they would edit and delete sexual scenes from the film.
Responding to the question, Budlender said: “That would take away from the story the film is trying to tell.”
He said his clients were not afforded an opportunity to explain their side of the story as they were given only two hours to prepare their argument.
Meanwhile, advocate Dali Mpofu, who represented Contralesa, argued that the film was under fire due to its misrepresentation of the Xhosa culture and should remain classified under X18. The court temporarily lifted the X-rated ban earlier this month, pending the outcome of the review proceedings.