Home Office letter concerning a film written based on Marie Stopes’ book ‘Married Love’, 30 June, 1923. The film was renamed ‘Maisie’s Marriage’ and Stopes’ name dropped from the advertising (Catalogue ref: HO 45/11382)
30th June, 1923
CENSORSHIP OF CINEMATOGRAPH FILMS
A film entitled “Married Love, a story specially written for the screen by Dr Marie Stopes, was recently submitted to the Board of Film Censors, and only passed by them with considerable modifications under certain conditions as the Secretary of State understands attempts may be made to show the film in its original state and to advertise its connection with Dr Stopes book and licensing authorities may find difficulty in deciding what action they should take in regard to it, he thinks it desirable to inform them of the decision of the Board of Film Censors.
After the fullest consideration the Examiners came to the conclusion “that there were many scenes and sub-titles which rendered the film unsuitable for exhibition before ordinary audiences, while the title, taken in conjunction with the name of the book and the authoress referred to, suggested propaganda on a subject unsuitable for discussion in a cinema theatre,” and they declined to give a certificate.
The Publishers of the film then approached the Board of Film Censors, offering to eliminate all incidents from the film dealing with the question of birth control and to make no mention in the posters or other printed matter that the film was founded on Dr Marie Stopes’ book “Married Love”. They gave a written undertaking that these alterations would be carried out and that the film so amended would be show only under the title “Maisie’s Marriage”. The Board of Film Censors decided under these conditions to give the film as amended an A certificate.
It is understood that the London County Council are now in agreement with the opinion of the Board of Film Censors and will not allow the film to be exhibited in London except under the conditions agreed to by the publishers of the film.
The Secretary of State concurs with the action taken by the Board of Film Censors and the London County Council and hopes that other licensing authorities will adopt the same course and only allow the revised form of the film to be exhibited and under the conditions agreed to by the publishers.
I am Sir,
Your obedient Servant,
S. W. Harris
Poster used to advertise Maisie’s Marriage in Page Hall Cinema, Sheffield, 1923 (Catalogue ref: HO 45/11382)
WEEK COMMENCING MONDAY, JULY 30TH
6.40 TWO HOUSES NIGHTLY 8.40
MATINEES: MONDAY and SATURDAY at 2.30
ALL THE WEEK
THE FILM SENSATION OF THE AGE.
FREE LIST ENTIRELY SUSPENDED.
FOR ADULTS ONLY
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
The Original Title of our Film cannot be used by order of the Home Office
? ? ? ? ? CAN YOU GUESS?
will be shown as
A Film for all thinking MEN and WOMEN to whom PURITY IS TRUTH and TRUTH is PURITY.
THIS FILM IS SPECIALLY WRITTEN FOR THE SCREEN by
- MARIE STOPES
IN COLLABORATION WITH CAPT. W. SUMMERS
A SPECIAL PICTURE will be shown at SATURDAY MATINEE for the Children
NO ADVANCE IN PRICES. BOOK NOW
OUR MUSICAL PROGRAMME IS A SPECIALITY
CAFÉ & BILLIARDS
1 TO 10 p.m.
POPULAR PRICES (all including Tax)
PIT 3D. SALOON 5D. STALLS 7D. BALCONY 9D
The Management Reserve the Right to Refuse Admission, and to Alter Programmes
John Waddington Printers LTD., Printers, Leeds: and London