Thursday, September 1, 2016

German ban of movie classic "The Evil Dead“ is lifted

Baker & McKenzie successfully reached several court rulings for Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, lifting a 32 year old ban of the movie classic 'The Evil Dead' (1981) in Germany.
'The Evil Dead' is the first feature movie of Hollywood director Sam Raimi (Spider Man 1-3) and is nowadays considered a masterpiece of the modern horror movie genre. The movie gave rise to two sequels (1987 and 1992), a remake (2013) and a TV series ('Ash vs. Evil Dead'). In 1984 'The Evil Dead' was first banned by the Local District Court of Munich. The court ruled the movie meets the requirements of depicting violence pursuant to the German Criminal Code. In the following years the movie was subject to further band from both local and district court level. Then, in 1992, the ban of an already edited version of the movie was lifted by the Federal Constitutional Court - in its well-known 'Evil Dead' landmark decision (BVerfGE 87, 209). The Federal Constitutional Court also expressed general doubts with the local district courts' rulings that the movie would violate criminal provisions of depicting violence. However, despite the Federal Constitutional Court's ruling, the original version of 'The Evil Dead' was subject to another eight banning decisions on the local district court level between 1999 and 2015.

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