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'Mary Poppins' age rating increased due to 'discriminatory language'

'Mary Poppins' age rating increased due to 'discriminatory language'

The age rating of the 1964 film Mary Poppins has been raised in the UK due to “discriminatory language”.

On Friday, the British Board of Film Classification raised the Disney film's cinema rating from U, meaning it contains no “material that is likely to offend or harm,” to PG due to “discriminatory language.”

In a statement to diverseA BBFC spokesperson said the film “includes two uses of the discriminatory term 'hottentots'. Although Mary Poppins has a historical context, the use of discriminatory language is not condemned, and ultimately exceeds our guidelines for acceptable language at the U. We have therefore rated the film PG at It is discriminatory language.

The word is a racially insensitive term for the Khoikho, an indigenous group in South Africa. The BBFC also explained that the word is used in the film by Admiral Boom (Reginald Owen), including when referring to chimney sweeps whose faces are covered in soot.

“We understand from our research into racism and discrimination, and recent research into rating guidelines, that a major concern for people, particularly parents, is the potential for children to be exposed to discriminatory language or behavior which they may find distressing or to repeat without realizing the potential offence,” the BBFC spokesperson continued. “Therefore, Certain language or behaviors are not permitted in U or PG under any circumstances, or are entirely context-dependent.”

The original Mary Poppins starred Julie Andrews as the magical Nanny and Dick Van Dyke as her boyfriend Bert. The cast also included David Tomlinson, Glynis Johns, Hermione Baddeley, Karen Dotrice, Matthew Garber, Elsa Lanchester, Arthur Treacher, and Ed Wynn.

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The film was a phenomenon upon its release, and has since been made into a hit Broadway musical and received a sequel, Mary Poppins Returns, in 2018. Emily Blunt plays Poppins alongside Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ben Whishaw, and Emily. Mortimer, Julie Walters, Colin Firth and Meryl Streep. Van Dyke appeared in the sequel as Firth's character's uncle.