Films on show at cinemas that portray people smoking could be restricted to adult-only viewing under proposals being considered by Liverpool City Council.
Health officials in the city said the measure would mean films which include images of tobacco smoking, without adequately pointing out the dangers of tobacco use, would have 18 certificates imposed on them.
However, the 18 rating would not apply to films which feature historical figures who actually smoked or those which provide a “clear and unambiguous portrayal of the dangers of smoking, other tobacco use, or second-hand smoke”, the council said.
Liverpool Primary Care Trust has put the proposal to the authority’s licensing and gambling committee.
Malcolm Kelly, chairman of the licensing committee, said he hopes as many people as possible will take part in the public consultation on the council’s website.
He said: “Their views will be a very important factor when we decide about the PCT’s proposal.”
The British Board of Film Classification is generally responsible for classifying films. However, under the Licensing Act 2003 local councils have statutory powers to classify or reclassify films to be exhibited in their particular areas.
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