The next time you go along to the cinema to see a 15 or 12A-rated film with your children, expect there to be good chance it'll have significantly more effing-and-blinding in it than was once thought acceptable, with the British Board of Film Classification relaxing rules on what profanities can make the cut into each age band.
The BBFC announced it would be updating its guidance for cinema and DVD film releases from February 24th, and would be becoming more "flexible about allowing very strong language at 15." The new guidelines allow for the repeated use of the word "cunt", discriminatory themes and language of homophobia and racism to make their way into 15-rated films, providing there is a contextual basis for their use. 12A films may also use the word "fuck" regularly, and make moderate sex references, providing there too is also a contextual basis for their use.
The board's researchers quizzed 10,000 people on their opinion of the new ratings guidelines (including, for the first time, 1,040 children aged between 13 and 18), before agreeing on the relaxation, claiming that the C-word was now "vernacular" among 14-15 year olds, and that even primary school children are regularly using the word "fuck".
Interestingly, soon-to-hit-cinemas Oscar contender The Wolf of Wall Street would be eligible to have its rating reduced from its current 18 to a 15 had it been classified after the introduction of the new guidelines. This is despite it being called the "most obscene movie of all time" (in terms of language, at least) with Leonardo DiCaprio and co dropping the F-bomb no less than 506 times in under three hours -- more times than any other non-documentary film released. [Daily Mail]