Inxeba (The Wound) has been ‘unbanned’ and will be back on mainstream cinema screens from Friday, 9 March.
The Inxeba filmmakers appeared in court on 6 March, for the urgent application brought by Webber Wentzel on behalf of the film’s producers and distributors, to ask the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria to overturn its X18 rating.
The film, about a gay relationship set in the context of a Xhosa initiation ceremony, was pulled from cinemas after being given an unwarranted 18X rating, essentially classifying it as porn. The Film and Publication Board Tribunal justified the rating by saying the film “lacked artistic merit” even though it had been shortlisted for an Oscar and has been nominated for eight SAFTAs this year.
Upon appearing in court, the filmmakers heard that the matter is postponed to 28 March. The movie is however allowed to be screened with an 18 rating in the meantime.
Director John Trengove responded to the court order: “Getting back onto screens in mainstream cinemas is a vindicated victory for the film, but the South African film and arts community still deserves to hear a real explanation of how The Tribunal arrived at such an embarrassing violation of our legal and constitutional rights in the first place. We look forward to more clarity on this score in the weeks to come.”