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Last Updated: Monday, 14 June, 2004, 10:20 GMT 11:20 UK
Ratings row over Moore Iraq film
Fahrenheit 9/11
Moore interviewed soldiers and bereaved parents for his new film
The US distributors of Michael Moore's controversial documentary Fahrenheit 9/11 are to appeal a decision by US censors to give it a restrictive rating.

The Motion Picture Association Of America (MPAA) has rated the film R, meaning nobody under 17 can see it unless accompanied by an adult.

Moore has attacked the decision, saying that teenagers should be allowed to see the film unaccompanied.

The film is due to open on more than 1,000 US screens on 25 June.

Lions Gate, one of two companies releasing the film in the US, called the decision "totally unjustified".

The MPAA said that the rating was given for "violent and disturbing images and for language".


The film shows graphic footage of corpses of US soldiers being burnt, dragged behind a truck and strung up, and a scene of US soldiers apparently mistreating Iraqi prisoners.

Moore said: "It is sadly very possible that many 15- and 16-year-olds will be asked and recruited to serve in Iraq in the next couple of years.

"If they are old enough to be recruited and capable of being in combat and risking their lives, they certainly deserve the right to see what is going on in Iraq."


IFC Entertainment, which is jointly distributing the film in the US along with Lions Gate, said it was confident the decision would be overturned.

"IFC has great concern with this decision and will do everything within its power to fight this unjust rating judgment," said its president Jonathan Sehring.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the British Board Of Film Classification told BBC News Online the film had yet to be submitted to them for consideration.

It is scheduled to open in the UK in the summer.


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