smoking manOr tries to, anyway. A ban on new films and TV shows portraying smoking was set to go into effect in India today, but a court challenge will probably postpone it until at least January. The Indian government recently outlawed smoking in public places, and is now trying to crack down on cigarettes in popular culture, in the hopes that young people who don't see smokers in the media will be less tempted to start smoking themselves. 800,000 Indians reportedly die each year of "smoking-related illnesses," which is a whole lot of dead people. (For comparison's sake, some sources say about 400,000 Americans are killed each year by the same family of diseases, though our population is obviously much smaller.) While we can hardly blame the government for trying to protect the health of its citizens, the whole freedom of expression argument - voiced in court by filmmaker MaheshBhatt - is equally hard to dismiss.

If the ban does go into effect, no new films or TV shows will be allowed to show smoking, and movies and television shows (foreign and domestic) made before the ban will be preceded by warnings reminding viewers of the dangers of smoking.
categories Movies, Cinematical