Viewpoint from a filmmaker - Martyn See

We continue with a series of responses from local filmmakers on the current regulation and/or censorship system in Singapore. This is an ongoing project initiated by a group of students from LASALLE. Discussions and exchange of views are encouraged between members of the public and arts practitioners on the regulatory issue of films in Singapore. View our previous interviews here.

We find out what local filmmaker, Martyn See has to say:

1. During the process of making a film, have you ever felt restricted by any regulatory boundaries set by MDA? If yes, in what ways?
Yes, Section 33 of the Films Act prohibits political films. Section 14 requires all films to be submitted for censorship.

2. If for artistic purposes, would you make a film which you know might attract censors or cuts but still continue to do it anyway? Why?
Yes, it is not the job of artists/filmmakers to self censor.

3. In the Arts Community Position Paper, it is suggested that regulation should be implemented in place of censorship, as the former involves objective classification that is not politically-motivated. What is your view?
Agree. No work should be censored, or cut, or altered. But we can regulate the kind of audience, by way of age group, to access these works.

4. Two of MDA’s guiding principles behind its regulatory work are to uphold community values and to safeguard national and public interest. What is your view?
These are vague terms. The individual's right of expression should come first.

5. Have you participated in any discussion programmes or feedback consultations with regards to content regulation initiated by MDA? Would you participate in future? Why?
No, I have never been invited or requested or summoned by MDA for anything.

6. What do you have to say about the censoring/banning of content in films screened in local theatres which are still obtainable on the Internet?
Makes censorship of films ridiculous.

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