Showbiz Sandbox 142: Is The MPAA Rating System Broken?

March 26, 2012

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Though the MPAA often rates more than 700 films per year, the number of rating disputes rarely reaches the double digits. This year however eight films have already appealed their ratings and it’s not even April. Has the MPAA lost touch with modern culture or are filmmakers beginning to push the boundaries with edgier content? Ethan Noble, of Motion Picture Consulting, helps guide filmmakers and studios through the ratings process. Noble, who recently tried to appeal the restrictive rating on the documentary “Bully”, provides an overview of the MPAA’s rating system and tells us whether it needs to be fixed.

Speaking of the MPAA, they released their annual report on the motion picture industry. Moviegoing may have declined 4% in North America, but overseas revenue grew more than 5% and is booming in markets such as China and Japan.

We previously predicted that Broadway shows such as “Sister Act” and “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert” would close by now. Despite playing to half empty theaters and consistently losing money, they are still running night after night. What gives?

We also cover the week’s top entertainment news including why YouTube is censoring Madonna, some record ratings for AMC and the retirement of a legendary Disney animator.

Play

‘John Carter’ Will Cost Disney $200 Million In Operating Losses
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/john-carter-cost-disney-millions-301704

MGM Takes A Loss On ‘Dragon Tattoo’ And Seeks Better Terms For Sequels
http://www.deadline.com/2012/03/mgm-takes-a-loss-on-dragon-tattoo-and-seeks-better-terms-for-sequels/

New ‘Dragon Tattoo’ DVD Is Real, Really
http://www.deadline.com/2012/03/new-dragon-tattoo-dvd-is-real-really/

Global Box Office Hit $32.6 Bil In 2011, Fueled By Exploding International Growth
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/global-box-office-china-international-growth-326-303324

Legendary Animator Glen Keane Leaves Disney
http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/legendary-animator-glen-keane-leaves-disney

Broadway Musicals Hang On For Payoffs Beyond Weekly Gross
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/21/theater/godspell-sister-act-and-priscilla-push-through-the-winter.html

‘The Walking Dead’ Season 2 Finale Shatters Its Own Record Ratings — Again
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/walking-dead-season-2-finale-ratings-301516

‘Mad Men’ Returns To Record Ratings With Season 5 Premiere
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/mad-men-season-5-premiere-ratings-jon-hamm-304182

Variety For Sale! (Because It Can’t Compete With Deadline Hollywood)
http://www.deadline.com/2012/03/variety-for-sale-because-it-cant-compete-with-deadline-hollywood/

Apple Sells 3 Million New iPads In 3 Days
http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/story/2012-03-19/apple-ipad-sales/53655716/1

Madonna’s ‘Girl Gone Wild’ Too Raunchy For YouTube
http://www.vulture.com/2012/03/madonna-girl-gone-wild-too-raunchy-for-youtube.html

Internet To Surpass DVD In Movie Consumption, Not Revenue
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/entertainmentnewsbuzz/2012/03/internet-to-surpass-dvd-in-movie-consumption-not-revenue.html

Gwyneth Paltrow Denies She Used Ghostwriter For Cookbook
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/gossip/2012/03/gwyneth-paltrow-ghostwriter.html

Starz Renews ‘Magic City’ Ahead Of Period Drama’s April Premiere
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/starz-magic-city-renewal-jeffrey-dean-morgan-301921

Big Losses For Winfrey’s OWN? Discovery Refutes Report
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/entertainmentnewsbuzz/2012/03/analyst-report-projects-big-losses-for-winfreys-own.html

Mark Burnett Settles $70 Million Legal Battle With Former Partner
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/mark-burnett-conrad-riggs-lawsuit-settlement-301928

Orwell’s ‘1984’ Getting New Film Adaptation At Imagine Entertainment
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/orwells-1984-film-adaptation-imagine-303003

NBC Renews Smash For A Second Season
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/nbc-renews-smash-second-season-303371

‘Smash’ Creator Theresa Rebeck To Depart
http://www.deadline.com/2012/03/smash-creator-theresa-rebeck-to-depart/

More MPAA Film Ratings Appealed
http://articles.latimes.com/2012/mar/23/entertainment/la-et-ratings-appeals-20120323

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