Melon Farmers Original Version

1 Day of Censorship

Police whinge at Birmingham gang movie

11th March

Update: Gangs of Whingers...

ASA doesn't uphold complaints against radio advert for 1 Day

A radio ad, for the film 1 Day , featured a character saying I owe my man a hundred grand rude boy and Tell me exactly how you're gonna get my money to me . The sound of two gun shots was heard, followed by a character saying We need to go do what we gotta do blood . As hip-hop style music played in the background, a voice-over stated One day to settle a debt, one day to make it right. Mobo says the film 1 Day is a British grime musical revelation. 'Thrilling' says Total Film. 1 Day in cinemas now, certificate 15 . Issue

One listener thought the ad was offensive and could cause harm to young, impressionable listeners, because it condoned the use of gun violence.

ASA Assessment: Not upheld

The ASA considered that the gun shots were not the ad's focal point and sounded relatively muted and brief, and listeners would realise that they were set in the context of an ad for a film. We considered the sound effects and the audio clip from the film represented its content, and any violence implied by the gun shots was not gratuitous or graphic. We considered that listeners were unlikely to infer from the ad that it was acceptable to resort to violence in order to settle a debt in real life. We concluded that the ad was unlikely to be seen as condoning the use of gun violence and was unlikely to cause offence or harm to listeners.


17th November

Police Spout Bollox about 1...

Censorship makes art more appealing

It's been a boom time for censorship of late and now the police in Birmingham have prevented the showing of a new film made in the city, 1 Day , which was released last week.

Anybody else in the country can see Penny Woolcock's hip-hop musical, set around Handsworth. Cast from local people, 1 Day depicts the pressures of gang life for a young man who has 24 hours to repay a debt. While the film classification board was happy to certify it as a 15, a Birmingham police officer advised the city's cinemas against showing 1 Day for fear it would provoke gang violence.

Despite coming from Birmingham, I can't say I was in a huge rush to see the film. But after an email appeal from independent film network group Shooting People to protest against the ban, I was first in the queue last Friday for the film's opening night. Thus proving that, more than anything, censorship has the effect of making any artwork more appealing, more glamorous and certainly more exciting than it might originally have been.


6th November

Update: One Day of the Censor...

Police ban on 1 Day extends throughout the West Midlands

A Dudley cinema has backed out of showing a Birmingham gangland film.

Showcase Cinema at Castlegate, pulled 1 Day as the ramifications of a censorship row between West Midlands Police and the filmakers Vertigo Films rumble on.

Odeon in Birmingham were the first to announce they were not showing the movie, which was released last Friday, after taking police advice .

And now Showcase have followed suit, by pulling it from Midland cinemas.

Karen Fox, general manager of Showcase UK Theatres, said: Showcase has made the decision not to screen the film 1 Day at its cinemas in the West Midlands region.

However, we are screening the film in our other UK locations.

Despite claiming they were not trying to censor the film the police have admitted a police officer had contacted cinemas criticising the film.

The film's director Penny Woolcock, said: Censoring this film is short sighted, shameful and lets a lot of people down: Even if 1 Day did glamorise gun violence, which it certainly does not, I do not think it is the function of the local police to go round saying what films should be shown and which ones shouldn't. She added: Let people decide for themselves.


1st November

Update: Gangs of Censors...

Police to screen warning about gangs at cinemas showing 1 Day

Birmingham police chiefs are to issue an on-screen warning about gun crime before a controversial new movie about gang life in Birmingham is shown on the big screen.

1 Day tells the story of two rival gangs caught up in the underworld of drugs and guns. The movie was filmed around Birmingham and stars local actors.

Now police say they will place an advert ahead of any other screenings to highlight the real dangers inherent in gang-related criminality . The advert features an illuminated headstone with the catchline: Once upon a time, they were dying to join a gang.

The film's writer-director, Penny Woolcock, said: The film shows how people get sucked into that life and it clearly spells out the consequences, which is people end up dead or in prison. The film absolutely does not glamorise that lifestyle. It has a clear moral message.

A force spokesman added: Our general advice is for individual cinemas to make a responsible and informed decision based upon local circumstances and taking into account the views of their local communities.

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