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HomeEntertainment'Barbie' won't be banned in Philippines, but controversial map scene will be...

‘Barbie’ won’t be banned in Philippines, but controversial map scene will be blurred

After a long standing controversy, ‘Barbie’ due to its controversial map scene got banned in Vietnam but will be getting released in the Philippines. However, the scene is likely to get blurred.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Philippines’ Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTPCB) said in a letter made public Wednesday that they had “exhausted all possible resources to arrive at this decision,” having consulted foreign affairs officials and legal experts. But after “meticulous” scrutiny of the film, the censors decided there was “no basis to ban the film.”

In a separate letter to a local Senator, the MTPCB has requested the studio executives to blur out part of the map scene to ensure that viewers in the country don’t “misinterpret” the sequence.

The movie’s entire controversy got erupted due to Barbie drawing the picture of a world map which depicts the ‘nine-dash line’, a U-shaped marking which is seen as strengthening China’s controversial territorial claims deep into the South China Sea, which countries such as Vietnam, Philippines, Taiwan, Malaysia and Brunei among others have opposed, arguing that it violates their sovereignty and territorial integrity.

As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, Philippine censors said they were convinced the ‘cartoonish map’ shown in the film was not intended to depict the nine-dash line.

Instead, the map portrayed the route of the make-believe journey of Barbie from Barbie Land to the ‘real world’, as an integral part of the story, the board said in a statement.

Dashed lines drawn in a ‘child-like manner’ appeared in several locations on the Barbie map around land masses crudely identified as Europe, North America, South America, Africa and Asia, the censors said. But they noted that only eight dashes were around the landmass labeled ‘Asia’.

‘Barbie’ will hit theatres on July 21, 2023

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