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Court lifts ban on “Shakespeare Must Die”

Written by World Events

Thai film director Ing Kanjanavanit with the DVD cover of Shakespeare Must Die, her adaption of Macbeth.//AP

After 11 years of legal battles, the Supreme Administrative Court has finally lifted the ban on the Thai movie “Shakespeare Must Die”.

Manit Sriwanichpoom, producer of the Thai movie, an adaptation of the play “The Tragedy of Macbeth” by William Shakespeare, hailed the court’s decision as being a new chapter in the history of Thai movies and thanked all who were involved in the fight for the right to show the film in Thailand.

He said that the public will be notified of when the movie will be shown.

The movie was funded by the Fund for the Promotion of Film and Video Industries, under the Thai Khem Kheng plan of the Office of Contemporary Art and Culture of the Ministry of Culture. It contains images of the “October 6” political event in 1976, during which student protesters were brutally crushed by the police and right-wing extremist groups.

On April 3rd, 2012, the Board of Film and Video Censors banned the film from being shown in public, claiming that it could incite public division. The film’s producer then took the case to the Central Administrative Court to have the ban revoked.

It was reported that the original ministerial regulation, issued by virtue of the New Film and Video Act B.E. 2551 (2008), was is in the process of having public opinion gathered about film and video censorship in Thailand.

The amended regulation will only seek to ban films or videos which contain content deemed offensive to the monarchy. For other issues, concerning religion, national security or sexual relationships, a rating system will be imposed instead.

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