Monday, 20 January 2020

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‘Ban this scene’ is true story, says director

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – A short film titled “Ban This Scene” is based on a true story of how the Burmese film censorship board censors films, said director and screenwriter Waing.

“All of the scenes in this short film are true,” he said. “There are no fabrications.” He told Mizzima he wanted to portray how the film industry and his colleagues suffer under censorship.

The film is in competition in the Freedom of Arts film festival organized by film director Min Htin Ko Ko Gyi and director Ko Thu Ra. The festival has received about 180 films. An award ceremony will be held on January 4 at the Rangoon Taw Win Centre. Prizes will be presented by Aung San Suu Kyi.

In the 18-minute short film, the film censorship board is made up of representatives sent by various ministries such as Information, Home, Health, Culture and Religion, and each member reflects the concerns of their respective ministry.

The representative from the Information Ministry censors a scene of a beggar by saying, “The beggars might exist in the real world, but they must not be in the films. This scene spoils the dignity of the state.”

A scene showing corruption of government officials is censored by a representative from the Information Ministry saying, “If we allow such a scene while the government is promoting good governance all of us will be in trouble.”

Zaw Win Naing who portrayed a representative from the Information Ministry, told Mizzima that actors, directors and screenwriters put the hearts into films that are arbitrarily censored.

“It is like cutting our hearts with a knife,” he said. “All of us have difficulties in making our films and dealing with censors.”

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