Let’s be clear about this right at the beginning – currently, there’s no organisation for censorship of digital content in India. However, in a case of sheer bending when you need to bow, Amazon Prime is arbitrarily censoring its series.
Apart from male nudity, there’s one more aspect in series that Amazon is scared might create a beef with the Indian sensibilities – cow sacrifice. Amazon is chopping off bits from the series ‘American Gods’, that depict male frontal nudity and cow slaughter.
This is bad news for filmmakers who love the digital medium because it doesn’t have censorship rules. That Amazon, one of the big three streaming services has already started bowing down to the whims and fancies – even when they don’t exist – will send all the wrong signals to a whole new genre that has India as a big market. It is also funny. Hotstar, the homegrown digital streaming service shouted from the rooftops that they were showing the controversial series ‘Game of Thrones’ uncut and uncensored. Several Indian web series routinely stream the ‘uncensored’ version of their series on YouTube.
There’s no word on whether Netflix has censored any of its series and films, but it doesn’t look like they have curbed the freedom off filmmakers.