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Edinburgh Film Festival pulls cockfight movie

Too much cockfighting in Cockfighter

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The Edinburgh Film Festival has decided to pull the 1974 film Cockfighter from its schedule because, as the title suggests, it's packed with graphic scenes of cockfighting - which is illegal in Britain.

Festival manager Charlotte Higgins canned the programmed screening after a complaint from the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA).

The movie, directed by Monte Hellman, and which "won praise for its central performance by Warren Oates", as the BBC explains, never got a UK certificate because of its unreconstructed cockfighting scenes.

The British Board of Film Classification's Sue Clark explained: "The film was never edited for classification in the UK because it's called Cockfighter. And if you take out all the cockfighting scenes there's not much left."

To underline just how much cockfighting there is in Cockfighter, the Internet Movie Database rather brilliantly summarises the film as a "southern action drama film about cockfighting".

It's seemingly not available to buy at the various UK online DVD outlets we tried, so those of you interested in seeing just how good Warren Oates' performance is will have to look abroad. ®

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