By Annabelle Lee

Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed has lamented the decision to allow the uncensored version of Disney’s film “Beauty and the Beast” gave the appearance that the country was succumbing to foreign commercial interest.

 

(To read this article in Malaysiakini click here.)

“It looks like the (Malaysian) government bows to (the) commercial interest of Western films,” Nur Jazlan told Malaysiakini when contacted.

Nur Jazlan had previously vowed that the Home Ministry will not entertain Disney’s request to screen the film if it did not censor a “gay moment” in it.

However, Nur Jazlan said he will not interfere in the decision by the Film Appeals Committee as it can function independently, even though it was part of the Home Ministry.

Nonetheless, he vented his unhappiness over the decision and questioned what it will mean for the local film industry.

“Does this mean local film producers can now make films with LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transsexual) elements? ”

Or will we have a double standard (applied to international and local films), he asked.

The Film Censorship Board (LPF) had previously approved the film on condition that the “gay moment” was censored.The premiere of the film was set on March 16 but was postponed pending Disney’s attempt to convince Malaysian authorities to allow the film to be screened without censorship.

DIsney’s request was granted after it went before the Film Appeals Committee.

Both Disney Malaysia and local cinema chains announced yesterday that the uncut version of the film will screen from March 30.

LPF could not be reached for comment.

“Beauty and The Beast” is a film by The Walt Disney Company, a US-based global corporation that owns media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, consumer products and interactive media.