The Motion Picture Association of America has slapped Sacha Baron Cohen‘s upcoming docu-comedy Bruno with an NC-17 rating. Similar to an Australian R rating, an NC-17 restricts anyone under the age of 17 into the cinema.
Sharon Waxman over at The Wrap has revealed that the rating was applied on the film’s first submission to the MPAA. The NC-17 rating is the result of numerous objectionable sex scenes that supposedly ‘cross the line’.
Universal has refused to release an NC-17 version of Bruno, and will wait until the film is given a lower R rating. However, the studio is confident that an R rating will be reached easily, as they are only in the early stages of rating application.
One of the scenes in question involve Baron Cohen’s homosexual Austrian fashionista Bruno engaging in gay sex with another man. In another, he sneaks into the tent of an unsuspecting fellow hunter on a camping trip, stark naked.
An NC-17 rating can be devastating for a film’s box office takings. Many cinema chains refuse to screen NC-17 films in the U.S.
It is unknown whether Cohen and director Larry Charles will appeal the rating, or cut the controversial scenes to reach an R rating.
Bruno has an Australian release date set for July 9th.