The recent racy sex scene on Showmax’s ’The Wife’ has caused public concern and the Film and Publication Board has stepped in to review the show’s classification.
VIEWERS waited with much anticipation for “The Wife” season two to begin on Showmax, but were left disappointed after the show did not deliver as they expected.
Now they are outraged by a racy sex scene between Zandile, played by Khanyi Mbau and Nkosana, played by Mondli Makhoba in a recent episode of the popular online series.
The scene was circulated on social media minutes after it went live on the streaming platform, with people convinced that the two actors actually had real sex during the shoot and it wasn’t just pretend.
Since the public uproar, the Film and Publication Board (FPB) has confirmed that they will be reviewing the show’s classification rating on that episode.
“We are aware of online public concern regarding an episode of the Showmax series, ”The Wife”.
’As the FPB, we are worried about the distribution and wider circulation of this clip by members of the public via social media.
“These clips have the potential to cause harm if accessed by children on unregulated online platforms,” said FPB acting chief executive officer, Dr Mashilo Boloka.
Showmax currently has an Online Distribution Agreement with the FPB, which accredits them to use the FPB Classification Guidelines to self-classify.
The FPB, however, still has the power to regularly audit the distributor’s compliance with its rating system and hear or adjudicate public complaints regarding classified material, if it is formally raised with the organisation’s classification committee.
“The Wife” currently carries an age restriction of 16 with the classifiable elements of violence, sex, nudity and language (VSNL). The FPB said they would do a compliance check against the justification given by Showmax in their classification report.
“The FPB has, as a preliminary step, brought these to the attention of Multichoice Support Services (Pty) Ltd to allow them an opportunity to respond to these in writing within 7 (seven) days. Should the review of the Classification rating of the episode be found to be incorrect, the FPB has the powers to re-classify any material that was previously classified. The findings of the compliance check will be shared with the media and public,” said Dr Boloka.
He said the Films and Publications Amendment Act does not in any way limit the sharing of content by members of the public as long as the content is not harmful, illegal and/or prohibited by the Act.
“We will in due course publish guidelines relating to the sharing of content via digital platforms to the members of the public so that they know what is permissible within the new law (Films and Publications Amendment Act),” he said.
He said the spread of this type of material on social media platforms calls for vigilance by the FPB to curb the illegal distribution of harmful and prohibited materials so as to protect the public, including children.
“We are putting in systems to monitor non-compliance with the new act, including the Online Rapid Response Team and the Enforcement Committee,” Dr Boloka said.