Inxeba pro­duc­ers ap­peal X18 re­clas­si­fi­ca­tion

Afro Voice (Northern Cape) - - NEWS - NONTOKOZO GXUMISA non­toko­zog@the­newage.co.za

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.

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