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BBFC shoots down Resident Evil 5 racism concerns

2 March 2009

The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) has dismissed on-going claims that upcoming action horror outing Resident Evil 5 contains explicit scenes of racism.

Controversy surrounding accusations of racism in Capcom’s eagerly awaited sequel have remained a hot topic following the game’s showing at E3 two years ago, where a trailer depicted protagonist Chris Redfield fighting black enemies armed with primitive weaponry.

More recently, website Kikizo contacted the BBFC regarding a particular scene involving a white female being dragged by her hair off of a balcony by one of the game’s infected locales.

In response, the head of communications for the ratings board, Sue Clark, stated: “In the version of the scene submitted to the BBFC there is only one man pulling the blonde woman in from the balcony, and I can't say the skimpiness of her dress impressed itself on me.”

“As the whole game is set in Africa it is hardly surprising that some of the characters are black, just like the fact that some of the characters in an earlier version were Spanish as the game was set in Spain.

“We do take racism very seriously, but in this case there is no issue around racism.”

In conclusion, Clark said that “the BBFC would not automatically cut a work for racism – we would normally give a work a higher rating to take it away from younger consumers who might not understand the issues surrounding racist remarks or attitudes”, though as the game has already been issued an 18 in the UK – the highest available in the territory – this wasn’t an option.

Resident Evil 5 is due for release on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on March 13.

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