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Distributors nix ‘Bella’ sex scenes

Film pulled from Norwegian Intl. Film Festival

STOCKHOLM — Swedish youth pic “Ciao Bella” is having trouble securing an international release because of graphic sex scenes.

Pic, which opened on Aug.3 and notched up a respectable 30,000 admissions in 10 days, carries a G rating in Sweden where sex, even among young people, is not considered shocking. By comparison “Borat,” R-rated in the U.S., also received a G rating in Sweden.

Foreign distribs want the sex scenes cut if “Ciao Bella” is to be distributed elsewhere, said helmer Mani Maserrat-Agah.

“My first reaction was ‘never,’ but now I understand that this is serious,” he said. “I’m in shock over the fact that in 2007 we still find it hard to depict youth sexuality on film.”

Due to the controversy, pic has been pulled from screenings at the 35th Norwegian Intl. Film Festival (Haugesund), which ends on Friday.

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