The Edinburgh International Film Festival said Wednesday it had cancelled the screening of a movie about cockfighting after being told it might be illegal.
, a critically acclaimed 1974 film about masculinity and blood sports set in the southern United States, was to have been shown on Tuesday.
The Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said screening the film could be illegal under animal cruelty laws because the fights it depicted were real and not staged. "They are very real and extremely brutal," said the group's spokeswoman, Natalie Smart. "Following an anonymous tip-off, we notified the EIFF that showing it in public would be illegal." Festival managing director Ginnie Atkinson said that since the cinema licensee risked prosecution if the film was shown, "I'd prefer to take the prudent route."
The Edinburgh International Film Festival runs through Sunday.