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October 26, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

Michael Fassbender in Shame

Fox Searchlight has no intention of appealing the NC-17 rating meted out to director Steve McQueen’s Shame by the MPAA Classification and Rating Administration. “I think NC-17 is a badge of honor, not a scarlet letter. We believe it is time for the rating to become usable in a serious manner,” Searchlight President Steve Gilula told The Hollywood Reporter. There had been little doubt that the movie, which stars Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan, would receive the controversial rating. It includes numerous graphic sex scenes, frontal nudity, and a horrific suicide attempt. Critics who have seen the movie at film festivals this year have heaped praise on it — particularly for what they say is the Oscar-worthy performance of Fassbender as a sex addict. The problem for the distributors, however is that several chains, including Regal, the largest in the country, refuse to screen movies with NC-17 ratings, and many newspapers will not carry ads for them. But producer Iain Canning, who sold the movie to Fox Searchlight at this year’s Telluride Film Festival, told Daily Variety that when he met with studio executives, “their approach to marketing and distributing the film this year was incredibly detailed and impressive.”