‘The Wolf of Wall Street’ Gets Banned & Censored Across The Globe

Published 1 year ago by

Wolf Of Wall Street DiCaprio FBI The Wolf of Wall Street Gets Banned & Censored Across The Globe

Since the film’s release this past Christmas, The Wolf of Wall Street has proven to be a font of controversy in popular discourse; while it’s a clear winner among critics, Martin Scorsese’s story of excess and greed has wound up on the butt-end of widespread (but not universal) audience condemnation, and been decried for graphic sex, full-frontal nudity, a curse-ridden script, rampant debauchery, reckless drug use, and – perhaps most significant of all – appearing to glorify the self-indulgent lifestyle enjoyed by protagonist Jordan Belfort and his stock broker cronies at the expense of their fellow man’s well-being.

To an extent, The Wolf of Wall Street‘s detractors have a point: the film really does go over the top in each of these departments, though for admittedly artistic and thematic reasons. Yet despite all of the outrage over Scorsese’s work (which we argue is a good thing), American audiences have nonetheless had the privilege of enjoying (so to speak) the film’s full theatrical cut without having the MPAA meddle with it on the back-end. It’s true that Marty had to cut The Wolf of Wall Street down to duck an NC-17 rating, but his movie has progressed through theaters unopposed by censors since its opening day.

The same cannot be said for the film outside of the US, however; according to The Hollywood Reporter, The Wolf of Wall Street has run into quite a few roadblocks overseas, with some countries affecting minor to notable cuts and others banning it outright from showing in theaters. While The Wolf of Wall Street has been making impressive bank in Europe – notably in France, Poland, Finland, Sweden, and Denmark – and has done even better business domestically, its early ventures into Asian and Middle Eastern markets has thus far met with a decidedly shakier reception.

Perhaps none of this should come as a surprise, given the nature of The Wolf of Wall Street‘s content; this is a film that’s bound to run into interference from more conservative governments, just by virtue of being so unapologetically amoral and ruthlessly vulgar. (Maybe the greater surprise is that Wolf hasn’t totally flopped at home.) Thus far, only a pair of countries, Malaysia and Nepal, have put the kibosh on The Wolf of Wall Street showing up in theaters within their borders, while India, Lebanon, and the United Arab Emirates have each cut anywhere from a handful of scenes or lines, to upwards of nearly an hour from the picture’s running time.

Leonardo DiCaprio as Jordan Belfort in The Wolf of Wall Street 2013 The Wolf of Wall Street Gets Banned & Censored Across The Globe

Other nations, like Singapore, have slapped The Wolf of Wall Street with ratings that prevent younger audiences from attending. In the case of the Lion City, though, such measures haven’t prevented Scorsese’s movie from taking the number one spot at the box office.

What’s causing the most upset in these regions? There’s one particular orgy among the countless bacchanals that take place within the narrative that’s on the chopping block, not to mention Jonah Hill’s ‘ludes-fueled reaction at meeting Margot Robbie’s character for the first time. India’s film regulatory board also blocked a pejorative line about nuns due to specific rules that require all religions be properly respected in cinema.

All of these developments were inevitable; eventually, The Wolf of Wall Street was going to get hit by censors (harder in some areas than others, mind). This isn’t the type of film that’s going to slip by watchdogs unnoticed, whether they’re government-employed or members of a supervisory body. In point of fact, as we’ve seen to date, it’s a film that’s practically designed to spark uproar – though perhaps not necessarily the kind of furor that’s been boiling over in print and online, recently. After all, Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese have both defended it on separate occasions; they know that it’s an upsetting movie, but that’s also part of the point.

DiCaprio and Hill in Wolf of Wall Street The Wolf of Wall Street Gets Banned & Censored Across The Globe

Does editing The Wolf of Wall Street and cherry-picking the most egregious scenes then, miss that point? Almost certainly. But as the Golden Globe-winning film makes its way into other territories, this sort of treatment shouldn’t be entirely unexpected.

What do you think, Screen Ranters? Is The Wolf of Wall Street deserving of a good, ethical trimming, or should it (and art like it) be taken as it is?


The Wolf of Wall Street is now playing in theaters.

Source: THR

Follow Andy Crump on Twitter @agracru
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  1. I still haven’t seen it and looks like I won’t be enjoying the entire, unedited theatrical version.

    • Same here in China ! Will be cut or not shown at all !
      Still waiting for the Hobbit to play !

    • I won’t watch it at all. I could not one redeeming factor about the trailer as far as I was concerned.

  2. This hasn’t been shown yet in Indonesia. Probably the censor board is having a trouble editing the movie while trying not to ruin the run time, hahaha… But seriously, does it really ‘that’ profound?

  3. The photo that’s paired with the article title is perfect. It made me laugh to read the headline and see that photo.

    Kudos Andy!! Or Kudos to whoever picked that photo to sit next to the title.

    • It was all me, so I’m glad that someone appreciated my efforts. Thanks bud!

  4. I can see them cutting it for the sake of decency. The problem is if they are cutting it so it doesn’t “glorify” their actions in the movie.

    I think the more tame this movie is, the less it condemns the abject lack of morality. Then it just becomes a “how to get rich quick” movie…

    • yup, cutting it actually loses the message

    • Bingo. A tamer movie is a more toothless movie, and a toothless version of this movie doesn’t convey any sense of moral authority. I will say that as long as the arrest scene remains in (the one referenced by my very clever header image, in fact), the film retains at least a shred of condemnation, but it’s hard to cut this movie down and keep Scorsese’s “against” stance intact.

  5. you think Kim Jong Un has seen it yet?

    • I thought Kim Jong Un WAS the Wolf of Wall Street !?

  6. It’s already been cut down by the distributor and funders to a certain extent even if it is Scorcesse.
    The “uncensored” version is already the SAFE version they felt they want to distribute.
    This is probably never going to happen, but all re-cuts and re-timed versions should at least get an approval from the producer.

  7. As Kofi said in the other article, it’s a good thing that people are upset. I don’t need to see the film and I don’t want to. I get it. They’re debauched. This isn’t exactly an area where you’d expect less; it’s Wall Street.

    But when people are upset that the film seems to glorify this, I think they have a point while potentially missing that first point. The film’s very existence would seem to glorify the subject matter while decrying and calling attention to it. But that’s the reality. Wall Street funnels money into drugs and prostitution. Big shocker.

  8. I guess this is one of the good things about living in America. I will say that my theater was a lot emptier before the movie ended. I’ve never seen so many people walk out on a movie.
    Also, it was a little awkward seeing it with my dad. I wouldn’t recommend making that mistake

  9. Ok so the movie could do with a good 40mins cut from it anyway… There are only so many scenes of parties you can watch before they get boring.

    The chick is spectacular however..

  10. I call BS on this! Nobody can seriously be offended by the themes in this, its the sex and really nothing more. The wallstreet greed is no worse than negative themes in any film. It was clearly the nudity and sex scenes… and maybe to a lesser extent the drugs. Viewers nowadays are extremely desensitized yet they want to act offended to save face. I haven’t heard anyone complain about the 500+ uses of the F-word! It was another amazing and well done Scorsese film. Let it be.

    • ^^^^This. Exactly this. Prudish puritanical bull from a bunch of people offended by nude women. Grow up people. It’s the 21st century.

      • Twenty first century huh! Yep and look at how the world is going now. No manners, no respect, lack of compassion, more and more violence. I’m not saying we need to go back to the old days but we’ve also completely let go of very important social graces. Sorry if it offends you but some of us still have morals. Please watch what you like but don’t knock others who choose not to agree with you.

  11. I saw an hour of this movie and had enough. I am by no means prudish but it really is porn that happens to talk about Wall St. Vulgarity disguised as art, glorifying and not teaching a lesson on Wall St greed or the type of minds in Wall st that tend to rn things. Those facts have already been presented and a movie that over the top is just a way to enrage. Now if that kind of entertainment is your thing so be it but to really be shocked a large group of people are offended than reality isn’t your game. You don’t have to be prudish to really find this movie too much.

    • The movie shows the guy crawling pathetically trying to get to his car while high,crashing it,cheating on his wife(ves) constantly,beating her in a rage,almost getting everyone on a boat killed AND going to jail. I really don’t think the movie condones his actions. It showed how seductive the lifestyle is, and also how destructive.

    • Well, if you had actually stayed and finished the movie, you would have seen how terrible his life REALLY is at the end. The first hour or more is really about the rise to fame, power, wealth, and “glory”. But beyond that, it takes an intricate look at how this lifestyle really can corrupt you. I hate it when people say they leave a movie. How can you know what the rest of the film is gonna say based on a hour of viewing from a THREE HOUR FILM. Makes no sense. Make the judgement of “waste of money” after you’ve at least gotten your ticket worth. Haha.

    • Completely agree, glad I’m not the only one who feels that way. Also hated how they acted like women were just disposable objects with no purpose other than to give them sex, disgusting

  12. “graphic sex, full-frontal nudity, a curse-ridden script, rampant debauchery, reckless drug use, and – perhaps most significant of all – appearing to glorify the self-indulgent lifestyle ”

    So it’s a documentary. What’s the problem?

    • +1,000.

  13. I haven’t seen this yet but my friends have been telling me it’s great.

    • Permit me to join with your friends: you should see this movie because it’s great. (It’s in my top 3 films of 2013, if that means anything to you.)

    • Your friends are right. Just don’t see it with family. I cant wait for the Blue Ray release.

  14. It’s great. This is one of the few 3 hours movies I’ve watched and haven’t noticed that it was so long. I was focused on it every single minute.

  15. Now I must see it…..

  16. I was hoping to catch it in Dubai, United Arab Emirates where I am right now. But, that’s when the news of censorship caught me. Then, I thought I would be able to watch it when I go to India for my vacation. Sorta the same news from India as well. Gotta wait till the DVDs are out!

  17. If your not going to be appalled by it you really should watch it. It’s eyeopening, shocking, revealing and Hilarious! Putting the debauchery aside that still hold true. It revel’s in the obscene excessive aspects. Everyone should see it at least once if they’ll be offended or not.

  18. I have no sympathy for the banking professionals portrayed in the movie so look forward to seeing how they are satirised by all those concerned.

  19. So I’ve been wanting to see this movie for a while. But I assume the image at the top of the article gives away the end of the movie? So now the movie is ruined for me. Thanks, Andy.

    • It gives away nothing that isn’t a matter of public record (and hasn’t already been talked about widely). Trust me, that shot doesn’t spoil the ending – there’s another ~40 minutes of movie left after that moment happens.

  20. I’m in the camp that doesn’t believe we should even accidentally glorify something like this. What those people did, beyond the individual lives ruined, is tear down a portent of my country for nothing better than their greed.

    If I had my way we’d go all middle eastern on their @$$es and bring lynching back into style, “HE’S WEARING A 3000$ SUIT!! HANG HIM!!!”.

    I know it sounds very hick-like, I am sorry, but how else do you stop these people??? The government clearly can’t, or won’t.

    • The government clearly can’t, or won’t.

      Wall Street owns a good part of said government.

    • I see there is someone who agrees with my ideology.

  21. Not interested at all. Couldn’t be bothered to waste my time and money on something that will disgust me a hundred percent. Any praise does nothing in making me rush out and want to watch it.

    Shades of Eyes Wide Shut?

  22. I don’t think such a movie needed to be made at all. I don’t know if Australia has banned it or cut it down for decency but I won’t be seeing it.

  23. Everyone is debating its “redeeming factors” … I’ll tell you its bloody redeeming factors: the fact that Martin Scorsese was even allowed to make this movie in a so-called free society,,, AND the fact that movies like this keep the subject of Fimancial, Investment, and Banking criminals on the front burnner because the media can’t wait to change the subject ! Let this film act as a cautionary tale about the greed and malfeesance that still exists today on Wall Street and in Washington; more importantly the fact that small-time fraudsters like Jordan Belfort were targeted by tge SEC and given measily jail time BUT that the major banking and government oversight agencies single-handedly de-valued the American economy and World economies are the individual criminals on Wall Street are still sitting on their yachts signing cheques in support of their political contacts who defend them by looking the other way. Can’t wait to see Scorsese’s next film on “Bush, Paulsen & The Banks”