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Once Upon A Deadpool has been re-classified R13

Once Upon A Deadpool has been re-classified R13 by the Chief Censor.

Once Upon A Deadpool is a version of Deadpool 2, a US action adventure in which a superhero finds a new purpose when asked to rescue a young mutant under threat. The new version has been ‘toned-down’ in its language, graphic gore and nudity, so as to achieve a PG-13 rating in the US.

The movie, starring Ryan Reynolds and young NZ actor Julian Dennison, has just been re-classified R13 by the Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC) after it was called-in by the Chief Censor because of concern about the differences in its overseas ratings. In Australia it was given an ‘M’ rating and in the UK it was assigned a ‘15’ rating (the same classification given to the original Deadpool 2 in the UK).

Under the current regulation, movies that are rated ‘M’ or below in Australia automatically receive the same classification in New Zealand. The OFLC has noticed an increase in the number of films that are being cross-rated as ‘M’ in New Zealand against Australian classifications, but which have attracted a higher ‘15’ classification in the UK. Neither the UK nor Australia has an equivalent to the New Zealand R13 classification. Where there is reason to think that a film that has been cross-rated might need a fresh assessment to determine the right classification for New Zealand audiences, the Chief Censor can call it in.

Bearing in mind the popularity of Deadpool 2, and the interest in Once Upon A Deadpool by younger viewers (particularly so in New Zealand, given Julian’s featured role), the OFLC also took the opportunity to include three members of its Youth Advisory Panel in the classification screening.

The Youth Advisory Panel is made up of twelve 16-20 year olds, with whom the OFLC have been working with to help inform its approaches and strategies in areas affecting young people.

“It was fantastic to have the benefit of the views of some of our YAP members in the mix when we were assessing this film,” said Chief Censor, David Shanks. “They confirmed many of our impressions, which was that, while significantly toned-down in terms of graphic gore, sexual innuendo and language, this film was still fundamentally a Deadpool film – which meant that it features wall to wall death and violence and dark, adult oriented humour.”

“They thought on balance an R13 classification would reflect the fact that this film has had some of the graphic content in the original Deadpool 2 toned down - but the result is really for teens and above.”


Please refer readers to our parent guides:

Challenging Media: talking with young people about what they’re watching

Ngā pāpaho uaua: te kōrerorero me ngā taiohi mō ngā mea e mātakitaki ana rātau

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