Last week at the Sydney film festival, a film depicting sex acts between men and donkeys was screened after the Classification Board granted an exemption from classification to the festival.
The Classification Board, the government agency responsible for classifying films, did not ask to view 'Donkey Love' before they granted the film permission to be screened at the Sydney Underground Film Festival (SUFF) and the Melbourne Underground Film Festival (MUFF).
According to The Age, no film can be publicly screened in the country without a rating from the Classification Board first. The Classification Board may refuse a classification if they find that the film offends standards of decency and morality.
According to WA Today, the Classification Board decided to ban L.A. Zombie, which is a film that features a zombie character having sex with dead bodies of the same sex. The film was not allowed to be screened at the Melbourne International Film Festival back in 2010.
Donald McDonald, the director of the Classification Board, said that the film was banned from being screened because if the film were to receive a classification, then it would be classified X18+ or RC, and that would mean that the director would be required to refuse an exemption.
Stefan Popescu, a director of SUFF, said that he was actually surprised that the Classification Board did not ask if they could have more information about 'Donkey Love' or asked to view it before granting the film festival to screen it.
'Donkey Love' is a documentary about a tradition of Colombian men that have sex with donkeys. The film won best documentary at the MUFF.