When the Motion Picture Assn. of America voted to uphold the R rating for the documentary "Bully" several weeks ago, the film's distributor, Harvey Weinstein, kicked up a dust storm of protest and publicity. But it's not just Weinstein keeping the appeals board busy these days — the organization is facing a significant increase in the number of filmmakers seeking to overturn the initial ratings for their movies.
The MPAA, which administers the ratings system via its Classification and Rating Administration, has already heard eight appeals for films scheduled for release this year. That's double the number the group heard for movies released in 2011 and surpasses the seven appeals it heard for 2010 films....
The 2012 appeals vary widely — they have concerned movies such as the action adventure "Sea Level," which tried (unsuccessfully) to nab a G rating, and a raunchy crime drama, "Killer Joe," which sought (also unsuccessfully) to be downgraded to R from the adults-only NC-17. Collectively, though, the appeals speak to a growing trend in which distributors and the MPAA fail to see eye-to-eye on ratings.
Did the folks presently bullying the MPAA over the documentary ever consider this scenario? Do they even care?