Extract from Martyn See’s blog, Singapore Rebel:
After you make a film in Singapore, you are required by law to submit your film to the Board of Film Censors (BFC).
If your film has political content, you have two choices – to declare that it is a political film, or not. Even if you don’t, the BFC can still deem your film to be a political film.
Your political film then goes before the PFCC. Although its role is an advisory one, the PFCC’s decision can mean the difference between a red carpet premiere of your film or a maximum term of two years imprisonment or a $100,000 fine. Yes, in case the press hasn’t reminded you – it is a criminal offence to make a ‘party political film.’
It gets worse: Even if the PFCC lets you off the hook, the BFC still retain the final say. Your last hope would be to appeal to a Films Appeal Committee (FAC). If that fails, you will be subjected to a police probe, similar to the one I went through for 15 months for the making of Singapore Rebel.
Here’s the final nail : Even if the PFCC, BFC and FAC lets you off, the Minister can still ban your film under the Section 35 of the Films Act, like my other film Zahari’s 17 Years (The saving grace in Section 35 is that it is not a criminal offence).
Read the full write-up on Martyn See’s blog.