24th September 05:28 AM
Samoa bans Rocketman
By Semi Turaga
Wednesday 12/06/2019
[Photo: The West Australian]

Samoa has banned the Sir Elton John biopic Rocketman because of the film's depiction of gay sex.

Under Samoa's laws, sodomy is illegal and punishable by up to seven years in prison.

Samoan Media report the country's principal censor said the film did not "go well with cultural and Christian beliefs here".

It comes after Sir Elton criticised a Russian distributor's decision to cut sex scenes from the film.

The film tells the story of the musician's rise to fame and includes a male sex scene.

It also includes images of Sir Elton, his husband and their children.

Apollo Cinemas in the Samoa's capital Apia wrote on its Facebook page: "Unfortunately due to censoring issues we have had to cancel 'Rocketman'".

Around 97% of Samoa's population is Christian.

It is not the first time that the country has banned a film over "cultural and Christian beliefs".

In 2009, censors banned Milk, a film based on the life of gay rights activist and politician Harvey Milk. Samoa also banned The Da Vinci Code in 2006, arguing that it conflicted with the country's religious beliefs.

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