Protecting Youth and Regulating Speech, Battle Royale
Tue Jan 23 02:07:36 EST 2001
>If I remember correctly, the problem was less the violence in the film,
>than the fact minors were shown committing the crime of counterfeiting or
Yes. More precisely, the scene in which hoards of street children are using
the counterfeit notes in money changing machines. But Eirin regarded this
indeed as "incitement to juvenile delinquency", even though, as director
Iwai explained, the counterfeit technology in the film is entirely
>A very important point. One thing people must remember about Eirin is
>that it is not simply a post-production regulator. From the beginning,
>Eirin inspected scripts before production and apparently still does for
>some major films (though I don't know how many films this amounts to).
>Eirin will never be just a ratings board if it continues to preview
>scripts. But that would involve it changing its entire constitution.
The problem is that Eirin, as its full name Eirin Kanri Iinkai suggests, is
the Administration Council for the Picture Code of Ethics. It has no hand in
the composition of the code - that is done by the Eirin Iji Iinkai
(Supporting Committee of the Picture Code of Ethics), whose members are
representatives of its 43 members. These include the major studios and
distributors, but not the independent filmmakers.
All production in Japan is more or less independent, with a small studio or
even a company founded for the production of a single title organising
budget and renting studios. The studios then pick up the title and share the
profit with the production company, hereby minimizing the risk of profit
losses. Since exhibition in Japan is still very much in the hands of the big
studios, there is little, if no chance for the independents to have a say in
how film is regulated - and the studios have understandably little interest
in modifying a Picture Code that helps to affirm their authority. For
precisely this lack of representation, a few independent distributors and
directors discussed the founding of a "2nd Eirin" in 1997, but to little
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