Harvey Weinstein To Release 'Bully' Unrated
3/27/2012 8:57am EDT
Movie mogul Harvey Weinstein is standing up to censors at The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) by releasing his new movie "Bully" unrated.
MPAA bosses initially slapped the documentary with a restrictive R rating, which bans young children from seeing the film without an adult, despite Weinstein arguing that "Bully" was essential viewing for kids as it raised awareness and should be shown in schools.
The decision angered many film fans and social campaigners - and a host of actors, including Justin Bieber and Meryl Streep, added their names to a 425,000-strong petition aimed at winning the film a lower rating in the U.S.
However, after the film failed to land a PG-13 rating by one vote - because of the harsh language used in the documentary - producer Weinstein has decided to release Bully without a rating.
Director Lee Hirsch says, "The small amount of language in the film that's responsible for the R rating is there because it's real. It's what the children who are victims of bullying face on most days.
"All of our supporters see that, and we're grateful for the support we've received across the board. I know the kids will come, so it's up to the theatres to let them in."
The unrated Bully will debut later this week in five cinemas in New York and Los Angeles.