The board that ruled Mary Poppins is too offensive for children to watch without their parents has been revealed as a former BBC star, a political journalist turned MP and a pioneer of computer racing games.
Today it emerged that Mary Poppins had its age rating raised from U to PG because it contains “discriminatory language.”
The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) now considers Julie Andrews’ 1964 story about the magical nanny unsuitable for children to watch alone, even though the film has captivated generations of young people.
He says the reclassification is due to the use of the word Hottentots. The outdated term was historically used by Europeans to refer to the Khoekhoe, a group of nomadic pastoralists in South Africa, but is now considered racially offensive.
And the decision was made by the BBFC, which says it helps families “choose well” by giving them guidance on what is right for them and “what is not”.
The seven members of the BBFC are currently Natasha Kaplinsky, Murphy Cobbing, Lord Patel of Bradford, David Austin, Gloria De Piero, Darren Jobling and John Stanley.
Mary Poppins has had its age rating raised from U to PG because it contains “discriminatory language”
Natasha Kaplinsky (left) is BBFC president and Murphy Cobbing (right) is vice president
Natasha Kaplinsky OBE is the chairman of the BBFC and the chairman of the board of directors.
The former television presenter appeared on the 6 o’clock news programme, BBC Breakfast ITN, and presenting the main evening news on Channel 5.
Murphy Cobbing He is vice-chairman and director of the board, but was previously a BBC news and documentary producer for 20 years.
He has also worked for television production company Liberty Bell and the Newcastle Chronicle.
Until recently, she was a trustee and vice-chairwoman of Tyneside Cinema.
Lord Patel of Bradford OBE is also vice-president and director of the board.
He is also a qualified social worker and in March 2018 was appointed Chair of Social Work England, the regulator for all child, family and adult social workers.
He BBFC website says: “He was previously a senior independent director of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), chair of the Mental Health Law Commission and commissioner of the Healthcare Commission and the National Abuse Treatment Agency. Substances”.
Bradford’s Lord Patel (left) is also vice-chairman and David Austin (right) chief executive.
Gloria De Piero and Darren Jobling are both independent directors
David Austin is the Chief Executive and is in charge of making executive decisions on behalf of the Classification Board, ensuring policy execution, management of the BBFC and managing external relations.
He has worked for the BBFC since 2003, when he started as an examiner. He subsequently became Deputy Director of Policy and Public Affairs in 2011, followed by Executive Director in 2016.
Other relevant experience he has includes his role as a member of the Board of the Cinema Advertising Association (CAA).
Gloria De Piero He is an independent director of the BBFC after a 15-year career as a political journalist working for the BBC and then GMTV.
She was elected Labor MP for Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, in 2010, but did not stand for re-election in 2019.
Darren Jobling He is an Independent Director of the BBFC.
But his previous career was in the games industry, where he pioneered the creation of racing simulations for Electronic Arts, Activision and Take Two.
In 2014, he launched the startup ZeroLight, where he leads a team that creates digital marketing platforms for VW, Mitsubishi, Lucid Motors and BRP.
John Stanley is also an independent director of the board.
John Stanley He is also an Independent Director of the board.
But he has more than 35 years of experience in transactional, physical and digital media in film, television, games and music.
He spent 15 years at Warner Bros leading the Home Entertainment division in the UK, Ireland, Spain and the Nordics.
John also served as Chairman of the Home Entertainment Industry Council for three years and is an industry expert in international and US film and gaming operations.
He also has a history of working for 20th Century Fox in senior sales, marketing and general manager positions.
But his career began in commercial positions in the music industry, working for both CBS Records and Polygram Music.
According to the BBFC’s guidelines on child-friendly content, “some scenes may not be suitable for young children.”
They add that while children of any age can watch it, parents are advised to consider whether the content may upset “younger or more sensitive children.”
The BBFC looked at the historical context (the film is set in early 20th century London) but the fact that the language is not condemned means it now exceeds the guidelines for a U film.
The BBFC said: “We understand from our research into racism and discrimination… that a key concern for… parents is the possibility of exposing children to discriminatory language or behavior which they may find distressing or repeat without realizing the possible crime.”
He added: “Content with immediate and clear condemnation is more likely to receive a lower rating.”
MailOnline has contacted the BBFC for further comment.