Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has refused certification for the Academy award-winning movie 'Joker' to be aired on Indian television stating violent content depiction. Joaquin Phoenix starrer 'Joker' was released across theatres in India in October 2019 with an 'Adult' certificate. As films with Adult certificates cannot be streamed on television, Turner International India Pvt.Ltd applied for a re-certification after 58 cuts and mutes.
"Joker has dark, disturbing and extremely violent themes surrounding a character with mental illness," said CBFC in its order.
Criticizing the climax, it added, "It justifies violence and criminal behaviour by the protagonist (playing anti-hero) and is not likely to be appreciated by children."
Following the refusal, Turner approached Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT) which upheld the decision by CBFC.
A two-page order by FCAT said, "Film tends to glorify violence and in case it is seen by non-adults it would have a lasting effect on their impressionable minds contrary to the submissions of the appellant's counsel that the movie was intended to generate empathy."
The film is a psychological thriller based on the life of a stand-up comedian Arthur Fleck, whose descent into insanity inspires a violent counter-cultural revolution against the wealthy in a decaying Gotham City.
The thriller received special nods in 92nd academy awards and Top Golden Lion award at Venice Film Festival. Joaquin Phoenix also bagged the Oscar for best actor.
(Edited by Anan Ashraf)