The University of Westminster hosted an exhibition held in conjunction with the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), as an opportunity to celebrate the centenary of the BBFC in a venue with an enviable film heritage.
The Old Cinema became the birthplace of British Cinema when it was chosen to demonstrate the moving pictures of the Lumière brothers in 1896, and went on to be a venue for ‘X‘-rated and avant-garde films.
- Established as the British Board of Film Censors in 1912, the BBFC has sought to represent public opinion and provide child protection for 100 years. It has moved from considering ‘indecorous dancing‘ in films in the 1910s to online classification of downloadable content in 2012, and the milestones of film classification are represented here through original artefacts and documents.
By examining items from the archives of the University and the BBFC we can appreciate the rich development of cinema history from a unique perspective.
The impact of legislation upon film exhibition becomes clear from the rarely seen papers of the BBFC, while the work of the Westminster Law School at the University further underlines the connection between the two through its innovative research on film and law.