11 February 2015, Johannesburg. The Film and Publication Board (FPB) notes complaints and concerns from certain sectors of society, regarding the 16 LNS rating of the Film 50 shades of Grey, in particular that the rating be increased to 18.

In this we wish to indicate the following:

1.    The FPB stands by the decision made by the classification committee who rated the Film 16LNS;

In this regard we have also made comparisons with other jurisdiction that have classified the same film. The United Kingdom gave this version an 18 rating. The United States has stated that the film maker has made two versions of the film. The US therefore has a cinema version rated at 17 (equivalent to South Africa’s 16) and an explicit 18 version. In Australia, the film was rated MA15+ by the Australian Classification Board for “strong sex scenes, sexual themes and nudity. In Canada, the film was rated at 18 and in the province of Quebec the film was rated 16+ category.

In arriving at 16 LNS rating, the Classification Committee was guided by the Classification Guidelines promulgated in terms of the Films and Publications Act, 65 of 1996.  These guidelines are from public and stakeholder input.  South Africa will release the theatrical (cinema friendly) version.

Members of the public can direct their complaints to the Minister to the following email:Ndivhuho@doc.gov.za


About the Film and Publication Board

The Film and Publication Board (FPB) is a public entity established in terms of the Films and Publications Act 65 of 1996, amended in 2009.  The Act as amended establishes the FPB to regulate the creation, production, possession and distribution of certain publications and films by means of classification, the imposition of age restrictions, and giving of consumer advice, and make exploitation use of children in pornographic publications, films or the internet punishable.

Issued by:

Film and Publication Board

Janine Raftopoulos

Manager: Communications and Public Education

T: +27 12 003 1400

C: +27 71 444 3121


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