Islamists in Indonesia Block Horror-Comedy Movie About a 'Menstruating Ghost'
Indonesian film producers said Friday they had withdrawn a horror-comedy movie about a menstruating ghost from theaters due to threats from hardline Muslims.
- The Menstruating Ghost of Puncak was screened to a selected audience in Jakarta earlier this week
- A man is seen browses pictures of Japanese porn star Maria Ozawa
"We did this because the reaction to the film is outrageous. The situation is still tense," K2K production house manager Evelin Hutagaol told AFP.
"Hantu Puncak Datang Bulan" (The Menstruating Ghost of Puncak) was screened to a selected audience in Jakarta earlier this week and was due for general release on Thursday.
The producers said they made significant cuts to the film before it was approved by the mainly Muslim country's censorship board, including most of the sex scenes.
But uncensored clips on YouTube have caught the attention of Muslim clerics and radical youth groups, who appear not to understand that the edited version is different.
Habib Salim Alattas of the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI), a Muslim vigilante group which has ordered its members to attack cinemas showing the film, admitted he had only seen clips on the Internet.
"We don't want the movie to be viewed by Indonesians because it contains illicit and pornographic scenes," the FPI chairman said.
"If theatres are still screening the film, then the FPI will raid those theatres. The film damages our morals. Do we want our country to be made stupid by watching this film?"
K2K spokesman Yan Wijaya said the producers had arranged a meeting between the censors and the FPI so the vigilantes could see the edited version for themselves.
"We're still arranging the date. We have to wait as this mass organisation (the FPI) is more powerful than our law," he said.
The Indonesian Ulema Council, the country's highest Islamic body, has urged Muslims to boycott the film but has stopped short of issuing a fatwa or religious edict on the matter.
Muslim leaders in September condemned plans for Japanese porn star Maria Ozawa, popularly known as Miyabi, to visit the country to play herself in a comedy movie called "Menculik Miyabi" (Kidnapping Miyabi).
The actress consequently "postponed" her trip.
In December, Australian movie "Balibo" was banned because it depicts the alleged murder of five Australian-based journalists by invading Indonesian forces in East Timor in 1975.
Indonesia claims the men died in crossfire.