Story by: Jack Foley
HAVING become one of the talking points of this year’s
Cannes Film Festival, Michael
Winterbottom’s sexually explicit movie, Nine
Songs, is now facing a legal challenge.
The director’s film production company, Revolution Films,
is reportedly being taken to court by its distributor, Tartan
Films, for allegedly breaking its distribution agreement.
The film, which is said to be Britain's most sexually-explicit
mainstream film, is facing a £2 million court action.
Although it has yet to be passed by the censors, it quickly earned
notoriety on the Cannes circuit, for its graphic close-ups of
oral sex and ejaculation.
The film revolves around a young
couple in London, Matt and his American girlfriend, Lisa (played
by Kieran O’Brien and Margo Stilley).
But while the sex scenes take up more than half of the film,
they are intercut with scenes of the bands playing, while the
story is framed by shots of Matt flying over the plains of Antarctica,
recalling the relationship he had from afar.
Winterbottom described its content as a reaction to ‘prudish’
films being made at the moment.
However, commenting on the impending legal action, Tartan Films
chairman, Hamish McAlpine, said the decision to proceed had been
taken on the grounds of loss of profits.
"The film business is the same as any other business, an
agreement is an agreement and it has to be honoured," he
maintained, in a statement. "Tartan will sue to the stone
age anyone who attempts to assume our rights in Nine Songs either
in the UK or the US."
Many critics who have seen the film doubt whether it will get
past the censor.
But, according to a report on Variety website, Winterbottom has
offered to cut some of the film's most explicit sex scenes to
get an 18 rating.
This, in turn, had sparked anger from Mr McAlpine, who had made
a career out of battling the censors.