20/02/2017 2:53 PM IST | Updated 20/02/2017 3:31 PM IST

Here's How The Indian Censor Board Has Slaughtered Gay-Themed Oscar Frontrunner, 'Moonlight'

What a pity.

Kevin Winter via Getty Images
Actor Mahershala Ali accepts Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role for 'Moonlight' onstage during The 23rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on January 29, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.

A profoundly moving drama about a young black man grappling with his sexuality didn't go down too well with the notoriously conservative Indian Censor Board (or the Central Board of Film Certification as it is officially known).

Moonlight, which is one of the Oscar frontrunners this year, along with La La Land, and Machester By The Sea, found itself under the unforgiving scissors of the Pahlaj Nihalani-led Board.

According to a leaked version of the CBFC report, one that was carried by Indiewire, two major scenes that depict the main character's homosexuality, have been deleted.


Since the film's subject delves deep into the psyche of being a homosexual, these scenes are essential to the film's narrative. But it isn't exactly something that the Censor Board of the country particularly cares, considering Section 377 under the Indian Penal Code criminalizes homosexuality.

Other than these crucial sequences, the words 'bitch,' 'bitches,' 'motherfucker' and 'dick' have been muted out, whenever they appear.

Moonlight has been one of the best-reviewed films of 2016, winning a host of awards, including four Academy Award nominations.

It stars Mahershala Ali, Naomie Harris, and Janelle Monae in pivotal roles.

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