God’s Own Country director says a distributor – not Amazon – ‘butchered’ the film’s gay sex scenes ‘to make more money’
God’s Own Country director Francis Lee has taken back his call for a boycott of Amazon after he accused the company of cutting gay sex scenes from the critically acclaimed 2017 film.
The film stars Josh O’Connor and Alec Secăreanu and was given multiple awards for its raw portrayal of same-sex desire.
Director Francis Lee had taken to Twitter Wednesday morning (May 20) to dissuade Amazon users in the US not to rent or buy the movie.
“Dear friends in USA,” he 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.”
God’s Own Country was censored by distributor not Amazon, director says.
An Amazon representative stressed to PinkNews that the company had no role in the alleged cuts, and that the distributor Samuel Goldwyn Films clipped the movie that was available on Prime Video in the US.
Now, Lee has recanted the call for a boycott.
He wrote on Twitter later the same day: “Dear USA friends, after investigation God’s Own Country was not censored by Prime Video (Amazon USA) but by the US distributor Samuel Goldwyn Films who butchered the streaming version without consultation to get more ‘revenue’.
“Prime Video were incredibly supportive in rectifying. The rental version of God’s Own Country on Prime Video is the correct version of my film.
“I would like to thank Amazon Prime for being supportive and I would caution any film maker of working with the aforementioned ‘distributor’. Thank you everyone for all your support.”
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Lee also confirmed that the Netflix version of the film was “perfect”.
The rental version of God’s Own Country on @PrimeVideo is the correct version of my film. I would like to thank Amazon Prime for being supportive and I would caution any film maker of working with the aforementioned ‘distributor’. Thank you EVERYONE for all your support ❤️
— Francis Lee (@strawhousefilms) May 20, 2020
Samuel Goldwyn films has been approached for comment.< God’s Own Country won rave reviews upon its release in 2017 for its frank, nuanced portrayal of a same-sex relationship and its passionate sex scenes.
Around the film’s premiere, Lee told PinkNews that the film could only have been about two men.
Lee said: “I think this film is important in that it is two men; I don’t think it could be a man and a woman or two women.
“I think it’s important because the film is about masculinity and about how men communicate.”