Canadian Movie Ratings: Quebec
Quebec movie ratings are the responsibility of the Régie du cinéma and its board of 11 permanent employees who provide ratings for 12,000 titles per year from around the world in a palette of languages.
In the early days, the Régie du cinéma board made censorship cuts to many of the movies coming into the province. The revolutionary attitudes of the 1960s changed the board's direction toward classifying movies rather than making changes to them. The classification process would allow certain ages to be restricted from seeing a movie if necessary.
Today, Quebec film ratings are applied using these classifications:
|G||Appropriate for viewing, rental or purchase by persons of all ages. When a film with a "G" rating might offend the sensibilities of children under 8 years of age, "Not suitable for young children" is added to the classification. Films in this classification have only occasional scenes of violence. These are not overly intense and are not condoned. Although there may be some nudity, love scenes remain rather discreet. Depending on the context, some expletives are tolerated.|
|13+||May be viewed, purchased or rented only by persons 13 years of age or older. Children under 13 may be admitted only if accompanied by an adult. These films contain passages or sequences that may offend the sensibilities of younger viewers.|
|16+||May be viewed, purchased or rented only by persons 16 years of age and over. Films with this rating present troubling themes, situations or behaviours and adopt a more direct point of view about things. They may therefore contain scenes where violence, horror and sexuality are more graphic.|
|18+||May be viewed, purchased or rented only by persons 18 years of age and over. Films reserved for adults most often deal primarily with the representation of explicit sexual encounters. They may also be extremely violent, showing scenes of hyperrealistic cruelty, torture and horror.|
In the 1980s the Régie du cinéma was given additional responsibility to regulate movie distributors in the province. According to Paul Simard, the former Director of Film Classification, regulating movie distributors was necessary to "make sure there is no undercurrent with distributors that could destroy the market." Thus, each distributor must have a valid permit from the Régie du cinéma to operate in Quebec. As well, each individual film must bear the correct stickers or visa prior to being exhibited.
While the Régie du cinéma has legislative authority to enforce movie ratings in Quebec, M. Simard reminds citizens that the Régie doesn't have the power to directly fine a teen for renting an age restricted movie, but would instead fine the video store or theatre owner responsible for allowing the infraction to occur.
The Régie du cinéma's legislation extends to all theatrical movies shown in the province along with videocassettes that are both rented and sold.
In early 2003 M. Simard retired as director and has been replaced by Marie-Josée Guérette, who is the "directrice de la qualité des services et du développement."