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Film and TV

God’s Own Country director calls for Amazon boycott after the film’s gay sex scenes are censored

Josh Milton May 20, 2020
LGBT movies. Shot from God's Own Country photo.

Alec Secareanu and Josh O'Connor in God's Own Country (2017). (IMDb)

UPDATE (May 21): Since the story was published, God’s Own Country director Francis Lee and Amazon representatives stated that Amazon did not cut the streamable film, but distributors Samuel Goldwyn Films did.

God’s Own Country director Francis Lee has urged Amazon Prime users in the US not to stream the critically acclaimed romantic drama after several gay sex scenes were reportedly cut.

The filmmaker took to Twitter Wednesday morning (May 20) to dissuade users of the streaming giant not to rent or buy the movie.

“Dear friends in USA,” Lee wrote, “God’s Own Country appears to have been censored on Prime Video (Amazon Prime).

“Until this is investigated please do not rent or buy on Amazon Prime. It is not the film I intended or made. I will report back”

An Amazon representative stressed to PinkNews that the company had no role in the alleged cuts.

Amazon Prime Video did not edit the video, they said, the distributor Samuel Goldwyn Films clipped the movie that was available on Prime Video in the US.

God’s Own Country director blasts Amazon Prime for censored film and calls for boycott.

Released in 2017, the film stars Josh O’Connor and Alec Secăreanu and mopped up awards for its raw portrayal of same-sex desire.

Amazon users have three options to watch God’s Own Country. Those subscribed to the company’s Prime programme can stream it for free, while those who are not can rent or purchase the film, its product page states.

According to testimonies from Twitter users and Amazon Prime customers, it’s the streamable version which has been shorn of at least two sex scenes involving the two men.

Reviews written by Amazon Prime viewers appear to corroborate Lee’s claim. One review dated May 6 alleged that the “version on Amazon Prime is missing the graphic scenes”.

Customer reviews dating back to at least May 6, 2020, claim that God's Own Country was "censored" on Amazon Prime. (Screen capture via Amazon Prime)
Customer reviews dating back to at least May 6, 2020, claim that God’s Own Country was “censored” on Amazon Prime. (Screen capture via Amazon Prime)

Another user dubbed it an “abridged version” of the film, while a user who watched the movie as recently as May 16 noted that they were “disappointed in Amazon Prime for editing out [..] certain scenes”.

“Shame on you for censorship,” they added.

In the States, the film is rated TV-MA under TV Parental Guidelines, indicating that the content is for “mature” audiences only.

More: Amazon, censorship, Film, god's own country, US

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