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The Wild One ( 1953 ) which was banned in both Britain and New Zealand was released in Australia in it's entirety rated only as Not Suitable For Children. Work that one out?
In Australia in 1948 all horror films of any kind were banned from import, and the ban lasted 20 years. !968 onward is when once banned horror films such as The Werewolf, Creature With The Atom Brain, The Man Who Turned To Stone and Revenge Of Frankenstein were passed for public exhibition years before the flood of horror titles being passed which started in November 1971 when the R certificate was introduced in Australia.
During the 20 year the ban on horror films was in place in Australia a very large undetermined number of horror films were banned in Australia and through my research it appears the majority, if not all, of the 1950s and 1960s titles involved received a release in New Zealand, either cut or released intact. Unlike his Australian counterpart the New Zealand censor apparently could tolerate them.
For Australian daybill collectors the sad thing is that the daybills that have surfaced for banned in Australia but released in New Zealand horror titles is that they are usually poorly designed duotone versions, which is a shame.
From an interview published in 1965 with the then Chief Australian Film censor Mr. Dick Prowse. Mr. Prowse was Chief Censor between 1964 and 1979.
Horror films of course had been banned for years, hadn't they?
''Yes we don't like them at all. I think the complete banning of them has taken place since about 1956. The then Chief Censor made inquiries from several people - including the heads of the various motion picture companies - and an agreement was drawn up between all concerned indicating that it would be better if this kind of thing were kept of the country.''
Under what regulation were the films banned?
''Undesirable in the public interest.''
There had , Mr. Prowse said, been no special clause inserted into the regulations covering horror films. ''The then Minister For Customs simply agreed to this banning being done''.
MORE TO FOLLOW.