Olivia Wilde criticizes airlines’ censorship of her film ‘Booksmart’

FAN Editor

Olivia Wilde’s coming-of-age film, “Booksmart,” was critically acclaimed, but if you happened to catch it on an airplane, you didn’t see the movie as she intended.

In a series of tweets Wednesday, Wilde, who directed the R-rated movie, explained that a third-party editing company that services films for airlines removed several scenes from “Booksmart” that centered on female sexuality.

Among the changes: the words “genitals” and “vagina” were cut, although the word “f—” was left in, and a consensual love scene between two women was omitted.

“What message is this sending to viewers and especially to women? That their bodies are obscene? That their sexuality is shameful?” Wilde asked. “I urge every airline, especially those who pride themselves on inclusivity, to stop working with this third-party company, and trust the parental advisory warning to allow viewers to opt out if they choose.”


“Booksmart,” which centers on two college-bound teens, earned more than $22 million in the U.S. and an additional $1.9 million internationally.

Wilde did not name the airline that carried the censored film she saw, nor did she name the editing company.

However, a representative for Delta Air Lines told People magazine that Delta uses films edited by a third-party company if anything in the movie violates their guidelines. In 2016, Delta came under fire for showing a version of the Oscar-nominated drama “Carol” in which scenes depicting same-sex intimacy were cut.

Still, “Delta’s content parameters do not in any way ask for the removal of homosexual content from the film,” a statement obtained by ABC News read. “We value diversity and inclusion as core to our culture and our mission and will review our processes to ensure edited video content doesn’t conflict with these values.”

Reports also indicate that Etihad and Emirates have run edited versions of “Booksmart,” but neither carrier has issued a statement.

Emirates and Etihad are both state-run airlines in the United Arab Emirates. All films are screened by the National Media Council and under UAE law, scenes that violate cultural sensitivities or religious morals can be cut.

ABC News’ Christine Theodorou contributed to this report.

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