Samoa censors crack down on ‘Code’

Church elders said the film would undermine faith

AUCKLAND — Censors in the small Pacific island of Samoa have banned “The Da Vinci Code” after church leaders complained it would confuse the local Christians.

Church leaders in the devout country of around 180,000 met last week and stopped the scheduled unspooling at the three-screen Majik Cinemas in Apia.

“If only the movie was based on the true Gospel,” Catholic archbishop Alapati Mataeliga lamented in the Samoa Observer newspaper. “Then it would not be so bad.”

Church elders said the film would undermine faith in a country that had received a lot of benefits from religion.

Magik Cinemas owner Rudolf Keil complained he was out-of-pocket due to the ban, said to be the first in Samoa since “Zabriskie Point,” released in the U.S. in 1970.

Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ” created church concerns about the level of blood and violence, but it was passed uncut limited to viewers over 18, Keil said.

“Da Vinci Code” is distributed through a handful of Pacific islands through Sony Pictures in New Zealand.

General manager Andrew Cornwell said it was already playing in Fiji and Tonga, which both have a strong Christian tradition.

Cornwell predicted that due to the ban, pirated DVD copies of the movie would be circulating within two weeks.

“The Da Vinci Code” opened in New Zealand and made $1.05 million in its first weekend — the biggest opening for Sony in New Zealand.

More Film

  • Mark Wahlberg Six Billion Dollar Man

    Mark Wahlberg's 'Six Billion Dollar Man' Moved Back a Year to 2020

    AUCKLAND — Censors in the small Pacific island of Samoa have banned “The Da Vinci Code” after church leaders complained it would confuse the local Christians. Church leaders in the devout country of around 180,000 met last week and stopped the scheduled unspooling at the three-screen Majik Cinemas in Apia. “If only the movie was […]

  • 'Sicilian Ghost Story' Bought by Strand

    Cannes Winner 'Sicilian Ghost Story' Bought by Strand Releasing (EXCLUSIVE)

    AUCKLAND — Censors in the small Pacific island of Samoa have banned “The Da Vinci Code” after church leaders complained it would confuse the local Christians. Church leaders in the devout country of around 180,000 met last week and stopped the scheduled unspooling at the three-screen Majik Cinemas in Apia. “If only the movie was […]

  • George RR Martin

    George R.R. Martin Developing Animated 'Ice Dragon' Movie With Warner Bros.

    AUCKLAND — Censors in the small Pacific island of Samoa have banned “The Da Vinci Code” after church leaders complained it would confuse the local Christians. Church leaders in the devout country of around 180,000 met last week and stopped the scheduled unspooling at the three-screen Majik Cinemas in Apia. “If only the movie was […]

  • Helen Hunt Ana de Armas John

    Helen Hunt, Ana de Armas, John Leguizamo Join Tye Sheridan's 'Night Clerk'

    AUCKLAND — Censors in the small Pacific island of Samoa have banned “The Da Vinci Code” after church leaders complained it would confuse the local Christians. Church leaders in the devout country of around 180,000 met last week and stopped the scheduled unspooling at the three-screen Majik Cinemas in Apia. “If only the movie was […]

  • Idris Elba Hunchback of Notre Dame

    Idris Elba to Star in and Direct 'Hunchback of Notre Dame' for Netflix

    AUCKLAND — Censors in the small Pacific island of Samoa have banned “The Da Vinci Code” after church leaders complained it would confuse the local Christians. Church leaders in the devout country of around 180,000 met last week and stopped the scheduled unspooling at the three-screen Majik Cinemas in Apia. “If only the movie was […]

  • Jay Ryan It Chapter Two

    'It: Chapter Two' Casts Jay Ryan as Adult Ben

    AUCKLAND — Censors in the small Pacific island of Samoa have banned “The Da Vinci Code” after church leaders complained it would confuse the local Christians. Church leaders in the devout country of around 180,000 met last week and stopped the scheduled unspooling at the three-screen Majik Cinemas in Apia. “If only the movie was […]

  • Dan Lin Warner Bros

    Warner Bros. Re-Signs 'It,' 'Lego Movie,' 'Sherlock Holmes' Producer Dan Lin

    AUCKLAND — Censors in the small Pacific island of Samoa have banned “The Da Vinci Code” after church leaders complained it would confuse the local Christians. Church leaders in the devout country of around 180,000 met last week and stopped the scheduled unspooling at the three-screen Majik Cinemas in Apia. “If only the movie was […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content