German pubcaster WDR is fighting a restraining order from a Hamburg court that blocked it from airing a film about the thalidomide drug scandal of the early ’60s.
Called Contergan locally, the drug prescribed for pregnant women caused several thousand deformities in babies in West Germany and dozens of other countries.
The 180-minute two-parter “Eine einzige Tablette” (A single pill) was supposed to be broadcast as a major event in WDR’s fall schedule, but the state court ruled in favor of Grunenthal, the pharmaceutical company that manufactured the painkiller.
The company sought a restraining order because it said a number of facts in the film were inaccurate.
Germany’s largest pubcaster hopes to have the ruling overturned in an appeals court early in the new year.
Oddly, WDR has done a number of docs on the scandal in the past without any major opposition.
But the court said viewers would not be able to differentiate between the fictional and non-fictional elements of the film.