EXCLUSIVE: Fandango’s top daily ticketseller is now The King’s Speech as of yesterday even though The Weinstein Co released the film 8 weeks ago. The pic has seen a 76% increase in ticket sales on Fandango since the Oscar nominations were announced on Tuesday morning. But attendance could really soar if The Weinstein Co succeeds in creating a PG-13 version to respond to exhibitors and educators who want the movie available to a bigger audience.
It turns out that educators believe kids would benefits from seeing The King’s Speech and are asking The Weinstein Co for a cut of the movie without all the “fucks” that gave it an “R” rating from the MPAA. And exhibitors believe the movie could then pile up grosses on the order of True Grit which has been appealing to young audiences because of its PG-13 rating. A clean version of King’s Speech is being discussed but is by no means certain. We’re told that Harvey will leave the decision up to director Tom Hooper. “If Tom doesn’t want it, it won’t happen,” an insider tells us. So there will be no confusing Harvey with Edward Scissorhands, here, though he has prevailed upon Hooper to give the picture a shot at its widest possible audience.
Hooper fought the MPAA ratings but without success. Here’s what the director told Deadline about the infamous therapy scenes back when the film was shown at the Toronto Film Festival:
“Everyone understood this was a non-negotiable key to the story. What a strange world we live in that Salt can open with Angelina Jolie having a tube fed down her throat, with water poured in it to drown her. I’m 37 and that scene continues to disturb me. That’s fine, but the word ‘fuck’ being used in a very humorous therapeutic context — to help a man with a stammer unblock a problem — is considered a threat. Casino Royale, with Daniel Craig having his balls smashed in, tied to that chair with no bottom, doesn’t get an ‘R’. Our film censorship is quite bizarre. Violence is acceptable while language is not, no matter the context.”