Magazine article Screen International

Jeremy Thomas Condemns Ban on Bhutanese Drama 'Hema Hema'

Magazine article Screen International

Jeremy Thomas Condemns Ban on Bhutanese Drama 'Hema Hema'

Article excerpt

UK producer Jeremy Thomas has condemned the ban in Bhutan on Hema Hema (Sing Me A Song While I Wait), the Bhutanese film he helped produce.

The mystery-drama, about a Bhutanese ritual, secured berths at Locarno, Toronto, Busan and London last year, but will not get a release in its home market.

Tibetan Buddhist lama and writer Khyentse Norbu's fourth film was banned by the National Films Review Board and the Department of Culture of the Ministry of Home and Cultural Affairs on the grounds that it demeans religious symbols, including masks worn by actors.

Recorded Picture Company founder Thomas, an executive producer on the mystery-drama, told Screen: "I hate censorship. I fight against it. I had no idea that Khyentse's film would be viewed this way and I was shocked to hear that it had been banned from the very people it was made for."

"The authorities have totally misinterpreted the rules and regulations, and it is obvious that we have been banned for reasons that are not listed in the laws of our country", added producer Pawo Choying Dorj. …

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