June 17, 2010 - Under a plan put forward by the Plymouth City Council by health officials children could be banned from watching films in which characters are seen smoking. An 18 certificate - usually reserved for movies with violent and sexual content - would be attached to any film release which features the unhealthy habit, in attempt to prevent it from appearing glamorous.
Movies such as 101 Dalmatians, Pinocchio, Peter Pan and numerous James Bond classics would all be considered adult-only movies. More recent productions including Titanic and Lord of the Rings would also be affected.
NHS statistics show 27 percent of adults smoke in Plymouth compared to the national figure of 21 percent - and 63 percent of children are smoking by the age of 16. In the most deprived areas up to 54 per cent of adults smoke - more than twice the national average.
Russ Moody, manager of Plymouth NHS Stop Smoking Service, said: 'This plan is about shaping the culture that surrounds the use of tobacco. He added: 'The driving force behind the long-term strategy is protection of young people.
Other proposals being considered by the Conservative-led council include giving out nicotine patches in schools, introducing blanket bans at outdoor public events and banning smoking in cars with children.
Editorial: Assigning an ‘18’ rating to movies with tobacco imagery is essential to reduce youth smoking, Christopher Millett1, Stanton A Glantz, Thorax 2010;65:377-378, Abstract..
More: People in Liverpool are being asked to give their opinion over plans to give films featuring people who smoke an automatic 18 rating.(Liverpool, England - plans for 18 certificates for smoking films shown in Liverpool suffer setback..)
Reference: Films featuring smoking could be given 18 certificate in bid to stop children taking up habit by Luke Salkeld, DailyMail.co.uk, 6/14/2010.