Final Cut: Wolf of Wall Street chopped by 45 mins in UAE

Producer Riza Aziz (L-R), cast members Leonardo DiCaprio, Margot Robbie, Jonah Hill and producer Joey McFarland arrive for the UK Premiere of The Wolf of Wall Street in London. (Reuters)

Leonardo DiCaprio flick The Wolf of Wall Street, which contains more profanities than any film in Hollywood history, has made it to the UAE’s cinema screens, but with a wolf-sized bite taken out of it.

With 546 uses of the F word and 73 other examples of swearing, “lots of religious profanity” and 24 scenes of a sexually explicit or graphic nature, the movie was heavily censored before it hit the silver screen in the UAE.

Lasting for about 45 minutes shorter than its original running time of 180 minutes, the UAE’s version of the movie has left some cinema-goers angry.

Taking to Twitter to express disappointment, one user said: “Butchered a great movie. Better not to show it.”
Another said: “No point wasting money on a ticket.”

“It’s like looking at the Mona Lisa with sunglasses on. There are so many unorthodox cuts that you are never really sure what’s happening,” Mohammad al-Mousa, 22, a filmmaking student at the American University in Dubai told Gulf News. “It felt disruptive. I’d be so disappointed if someone disrupted the integrity of my film like that.”

“I didn’t understand what was going on, the flow was completely lost due to the amount of deleted scenes,” movie-goer Fatimah Mahmoud told Al Arabiya News.

The cinema at Dubai Mall, the largest shopping complex in the world, posted a disclaimer in front of its box office on Thursday: “The Wolf of Wall Street contains muted words, and some scenes have been removed as they were not considered suitable. Reel Cinemas has no control on the censorship and we apologize for an inconveniences caused,” it said.

The move has been given a 15+ rating in the country.

The UAE body tasked with approving films in the country, the National Media Council, told Gulf News that the cuts were made even before the film came under their review.

“We didn’t touch the film. The distributor already made the cut [when it came to us]. When we asked the distributors, they said they cut all those scenes and words, because they want to distribute the film in GCC,” Juma Obaid al-Leem, director of the Media Content Tracking Department, said.

The film tells the true story of Jordan Belfort, a stockbroker who was convicted of fraud crimes in the 1990s. Directed by Martin Scorsese, it focuses on Belfort’s hedonistic lifestyle.
 

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:42 - GMT 06:42
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