Venezuela: Catholic universities ban transgender film, filmmakers say

The production crew of film ‘Tamara’ in a public statement reported that Catholic University Andrés Bello (UCAB) and Catholic University Santa Rosa (UCSAR) refused to screen their film as they considered it a piece of “transsexual propaganda”, reported Venezuelan newspaper 2001 on 6 March 2017.   The film is inspired by the life of Tamara […]

Spain: Censorship under Franco still looms over the arts

While Dr. Jordi Cornella, currently a lecturer in Hispanic studies at the University of Glasgow, began his research on censorship in translated works under Francisco Franco’s dictatorial regime in Spain (1939-1975), his findings took an unexpected turn. “It was a total surprise,” Cornella told Freemuse, explaining his discovery that literary works that had been censored […]

Israel: Palestinian authorities ban book, issue arrest warrant for writer

Palestinian authorities have banned Abbad Yahya’s latest novel ‘Crime in Ramallah’ for “indecency”, confiscated copies of the novel from bookstores and issued an arrest warrant for the writer, who is currently in Qatar on business and afraid of going back home, reported Al Jazeera on 10 February 2017. “I don’t know what to do. If […]

India/Pakistan: Films continue to fall victim to threats and censorship

India’s Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has refused to certify film ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’, which revolves around the stories of four women, reported Hindustan Times on 23 February 2017. The CBFC stated the reason for the denial was that: “The story is lady oriented, their fantasy above life. There are contanious [sic] sexual […]

Peru: Exhibition cut short due to controversial LGBT artworks

The fifth edition of contemporary art exhibition ‘Outside’ was cut short by venue organisers French Alliance of Arequipa due to three works by Peruvian artist Jesús Álvarez that made reference to the city of Arequipa’s plurality and diversity by pointing to its “queer nature”, reported Sin Fronteras on 27 December 2016. According to exhibition curator […]

USA: Censorship continues in public spaces and schools

Throughout 2016 and into the beginning of 2017, the US has seen multiple cases of censorship and attempted censorship of art in public spaces and schools. Murals on public walls or in university halls, books in school curricula and productions of plays and musicals have all been targeted by a variety of groups because of […]

Cuba: Festival bans film portraying Castro’s ill treatment of homosexuals

The Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC) decided to ban the film ‘Santa y Andrés’, which had been pre-selected for display at the Festival of New Latin American Cinema in Havana, also known as the Havana Film Festival, that took place 8-18 December 2016. The film was deemed contrary to Revolutionary values and […]

Russia: Artistic freedom threatened by nationalist and orthodox groups

While Russian president Vladimir Putin vowed in a meeting with film directors and artists in early December 2016 to protect artistic freedom, he also said artists carry a responsibility not to offend religious believers, saying “there is a very narrow divide between dangerous shock value and freedom of creativity”, reported The New York Times on […]

YouTube: Video banned for “sexual content” re-appears with disclaimer

American rapper Mykki Blanco’s latest music video ‘Loner’ was taken down from YouTube on 2 December 2016 as it didn’t meet “community guidelines”; hours later the video was put back on the site, but now with a “content warning” and viewers need to sign in to confirm their age, reported Billboard on 2 December 2016. […]

USA: Christian music festival drops band due to gay singer

Christian band Everyday Sunday was dropped from northern California Christian music festival Joshua Fest as 11 production staff threatened to walk out if the recently out lead singer of the band, Trey Pearson, took the stage, reported Billboard on 12 September 2016. Joshua Fest owner Aaron Diello said that his production manager told him that out […]

India: Artists struggle with censors over LGBT and other themes

In recent months filmmakers and playwrights have been challenging Indian certification boards after works focusing on LGBT, political and religious themes have come under fire by censors, especially at a time when nationalist ideas and groups are gaining traction in the public and political spheres. LGBT themes in film India’s Central Board of Film Certification […]

USA: Airline shows film with cut lesbian kissing scenes

US-based Delta Airlines has been drawing controversy for showing an edited version of Academy Award-nominated film ‘Carol’ on flights that cuts out kissing scenes between the film’s two female leads, Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, reported The Independent on 8 August 2016. Airline spokesperson Liz Savadelis told LGBT magazine AfterEllen on 4 August 2016 that the […]

Kenya: LGBT music video banned

The Kenyan Film and Classification Board banned Art Attack’s video for its remix of Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ gay rights song ‘Same Love’ on the grounds that “it does not adhere to the morals of the country”, Kenyan newspaper The Star reported on 23 February 2016. Board chairman Ezekiel Mutua also said that the video […]

India: Non-state groups ban Bollywood film featuring homosexual relationship

The Millat Bedari Muhim Committee (MBMC) and Aligarh city mayor Shakuntala Bharti have banned Bollywood film ‘Aligarh’ because of its homosexuality, which they believe will besmirch the reputation of the north Indian city, reported The Indian Express on 28 February 2016. The MBMC further issued a letter to India’s information and broadcasting minister to have […]

Five more countries ban ‘The Danish Girl’

As of 1 February 2016, five more countries have followed suit with Qatar and banned screenings of Tom Hooper’s transgender film ‘The Danish Girl’. Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman and United Arab Emirates failed to pass local censor requirements over “moral depravity” and that it “promoted homosexuality and gender transformation”. Sources » Gay Star News – 1 February […]

Thailand: Ban on LGBT-themed film stands

Thailand’s Administrative Court ruled on 25 December 2015 that the five-year ban on the 2010 LGBT film ‘Insects in the Backyard’ will remain in effect, reported Film Journal International. The primary evidence cited is that the movie has a brief scene of graphic sexual intercourse, violating section 287 of the criminal code that states content […]

Qatar: Ministry of Culture bans transgender film ‘The Danish Girl’

Authorities in Qatar have banned theatres from screening ‘The Danish Girl’ on the afternoon of 11 January 2016 following protests and reactions online about the film’s content, reported Doha News. “We would like to inform you that we have contacted the concerned administration and the screening of the Danish film is now banned from cinemas. […]

France: Court rules Palme d’Or winner too offensive

Abdellatif Kechiche’s Palme d’Or winner at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, ‘La Vie d’Adèle’ (‘Blue is the Warmest Color’), lost its French operating permission on 9 December 2015 when a Paris court ruled that the film contains “realistic sex scenes likely to offend the sensibilities of a young audience.” The lesbian love story which many […]

Singapore: Petition launched to ban singer from performing

Over 20,000 “concerned citizens, parents and individuals” in Singapore have signed a petition to stop Adam Lambert from performing at the Countdown 2016 New Year’s Eve concert due to his “promotion of LGBT rights,” reported The Independent. The group petitioned both the government and concert organisers, MediaCorp, and said, “a simple online search would reveal that he […]

USA: Michigan school bans novel from book fair

An elementary school in Michigan has banned the 12th novel in the ‘Captain Underpants’ series of books from its book fair due to a main character being gay, news station WXYZ reported. Dr Barry Martin, superintendent of Monroe Public Schools, explained that the publishing company, Scholastic, notified the school that one of their titles may […]

USA: Country stations ban song for promoting gay agenda

The country song ‘Girl Crush’ by Little Big Town has been banned by some American country stations after listeners complained it ‘promotes the gay agenda’. This despite the fact that the song is about wanting back an ex, and just includes lyrics detailing the attractiveness of his new girlfriend. The group has now filmed a […]

Pakistan: Drummer and performer killed by armed men

In Swabi in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, two people were killed in a violent attack in the middle of the night when a group of transgender dancers and musicians was returning home after performing a show at a wedding party. The attackers were waiting for the musicians and dancers in a field and tried to abduct […]

United Kingdom: Two concerts with Ugandan rapper cancelled

Ugandan rapper Bobi Wine (real name: Robert Kyagulanyi) has had two planned performances in the UK pulled after venues learned of the singer’s anti-LGBTI stance, reported Gay News Network on 31 July 2014. A theatre in London and a venue in Birmingham have refused to host upcoming shows by the rapper after news surfaced the […]

Russia: A gay writer talks about homophobia and libel under Putin

In times of crisis, Russia hunts for the enemy within; that’s what author and journalist Sergey Khazov tells Cathal Sheerin of PEN International when he asks him why there is so much anti-gay sentiment in his country. Khazov is a gay Russian writer. Huffington Post asked a number of Russian journalists why they think Russia’s […]

India: Art themed on same-sex issues face censorship

The recent ruling by the Indian Supreme Court reinstating a colonial-era law banning gay sex on 11 December 2013 has caused anger and dismay from the Indian art community. Not just because same-sex intercourse has been criminalised, but because there could be far-reaching effects of the law, including censorship of the arts. From art shows […]

Iran: Work of homosexual writer and poet blacklisted

The words by the Iranian writer and poet Payam Feili are banned by the Iranian authorities. He is a homosexual writer and poet whose works are condemned in Iran due to his sexual orientation. With disregard for content or style, they have completely blacklisted his works. Nogaam, an online publisher freely distributing the work of […]

Egypt: Film about homosexuality irks censors

Director Hany Fawzy’s ‘Family Secrets’, Egypt’s first film about homosexuality, has hit a sensitive nerve with censors in this Muslim country where the topic is taboo. The censors have objected to several scenes and want them deleted, said Fawzy, himself a well-known script writer taking his first turn at directing. See on www.globalpost.com

Egypt: Gay film under fire

Touted by the media as “Egypt’s first gay film” Hany Fawzy‘s ‘Family Secrets’ has censors asking for 13 scenes to be deleted, even though the movie is not explicit in nature. Trailer for ‘Family Secrets’ » See on www.cairoscene.com

Uzbekistan: Music video blacklisted with “strong suggestion” from security services

Uzbek pop stars sing about the forbidden. Homosexuality, currently banned in Uzbekistan, is finding its way into performances by pop musicians. In 2012, Azlar became famous – and banned – in Uzbekistan for a song about this topic, and now, the musician Asal Choi (“Honey Tea”) is stirring up controversy with a music video where […]

Australia: Ban of gay film appealed on YouTube

Actor James Franco launched an online appeal on YouTube, speaking directly to the Australian Classification Board after censors banned a gay film, ‘I Want Your Love’, from screening in Australia. His appeal has been viewed almost 80,000 times during its first six days on YouTube. “Frankly, adults should be able to choose, they’re not going […]

Uganda: Media Council bans performance with homosexual theme

Performances of a play about the struggles of a young, gay Ugandan businessman was halted by Media Council authorities one day before its scheduled opening night at the National Theatre in Uganda’s capital, Kampala. ‘The River and The Mountain’, written by the British playwright Beau Hopkins, portrays a corporate businessman coming to

USA: Attempt to stamp out homosexuality from cartoons

The conservative American mothers’ group One Million Moms has launched an attempt to stamp out homosexuality from the world of graphic novels. The American Family Association-run conservative Christian organisation has taken issue with the news that DC Comics is planning to reveal that one of its established characters is gay – speculation is centring around […]

Syria: Ban on tv-series and films about homosexuality

An article in Al-Akhbar explains about the censorship of tv-series and films about lesbians, such as the television series ‘Behind Bars’ and the new short film, ‘A Lesbian Tale’. In an interview with Al-Akhbar, director Muhammad Khair Diab explains about his new short film titled ‘A Lesbian Tale’ which is a love story between two […]

 

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