Booksmart was one of the funniest and best movies of 2019 (and probably the decade). It tells a compelling and hilarious coming-of-age story that doesn't shy away from the honesty regarding modern teens and sex that most comedies in the genre do. The film's progressive message was heralded by critics and so was its overall story. It is one of the best feature directorial debuts ever.
But controversy struck when Olivia Wilde found out that many airlines were censoring her work, so she took to Twitter to talk about the main issues with that sort of arbitrary editing. Check out her Twitter thread below and let's talk after the jump.
As of now, we know that the airline in question, Delta, says they don't single out certain kinds of sexuality to censor. But it is clear that they, and most airlines, use a third party that sells them censored movies. In a statement to The Washington Post, Delta said its “content parameters do not in any way ask for the removal of homosexual content from the film.”
Take a read of Wilde's comments and list of edits.
It's clear where Wilde stands when it comes to her work. During an Awards Show, Wilde stated “If it’s not X-rated, surely it’s acceptable on an airplane ... There’s insane violence of bodies being smashed in half [in other movies], and yet a love scene between two women is censored from the film. It’s such an integral part of this character’s journey. I don’t understand it."
According to the same Washington Post article, Delta passengers protested that the in-flight cut of “Rocketman,” the Elton John biopic released this year, was missing sex scenes and even a chaste kiss between two men. They also cut scenes in Carol and a scene in Bad Moms when the mothers kiss, too.
So it seems like there's a pattern.
How do Airlines censor plane movies?
Airlines like Delta use a third party to edit their movies. That party uses an internal standard on what to cut. As Wilde mentioned, it seems like cursing and violence is allowed, but sexuality is not.
This seems as twisted as the MPAA.
Look, a giant corporation siphoning out censorship to a third party is not news, but it's also kind of bullshit. The movies on airplanes come with warnings. It's weird that they are censored at all. That should be a parent's job.
Now, I understand that you can't control who you sit next to on a plane, and you maybe don't want a kid looking over and seeing a full-blown sex scene, but I also think it's awful having someone in a room deem what's acceptable for us to watch.
Especially if they don't have to prove anything and are making moral decisions based on no tangible evidence.
What do you all think?
Let us know in the comments!