Buenos Aires, Argentina-November 7th, 2014-Civil Court Judge Guillermo Blanch orderd on October 21st that “Erasing Dad” (original title: Borrando a Papá) cannot be shown in Argentina until three minutes of the film are removed and ordered Youtube and Google to block the film in Argentina. As of November 2nd, Youtube has blocked the video within Argentina due to this court order.
The documentary “Erasing Dad” is about divorced fathers who cannot see their children due to the action of family courts in Argentina.
This injunction was granted after the film premiered in movie theaters and was released simultaneously on Youtube by San Telmo Productions on October 2nd. Co-directors Ginger Gentile (USA) and Sandra Fernandez Ferreira (Argentina) and Producer Gabriel Balanovsky (Argentina) removed Erasing Dad from its official Youtube Channel and were forced to cancel all projections in Argentina. Numerous unauthorized copies circulate on the internet, including some on Argentine newspapers internet portals, in protest of the court order. After November 2nd many of the unauthorized copies on Youtube are now blocked within Argentina. Projections outside of Argentina remain unaffected by the order and it has been shown in the Montevideo Film Festival and will be projected in the FiCMA Film Festival Barcelona on November 12th.
Watch trailer with English subtitles: http://youtu.be/21vZpXtyiaQ
The three professionals who requested the injunction are medical doctor María Cristina Ravazzola, lawyer Hilda María Radrizzani and psychologist Susana Tesone, of the PIAFF center, claiming that they were tricked into participating in the documentary. Ravazzola is quoted in the Clarín newspaper: “We were interviewed for over an hour but we were edited and intercut with money signs ($), which is damaging.”
“These professionals signed appearance releases,” said co-director Fernandez Ferreira, “but don´t like the context in which they are shown. They provide court ordered therapy to reunite children with their fathers but admit to prolonging the process to prevent fathers and children from reuniting. “
The technical reasons why the injunction was granted are unknown as the court has not let the defendants or their lawyers see the case file. Judge Blanch ruled that the injunction must be respected until a higher court hears the appeal submitted by the defendants. No trial date has been set.
“We will not let a judge sit in our editing suite and tell us what frames need to be cut like the priest from “Cinema Paradiso”, said Co-director Ginger Gentile states. “While this act of censorship made all the major newspapers the next film might not be so lucky. The work of journalists and filmmakers can be stopped with a simple court order.”
This is not the first attack the “Erasing Dad” has received. Before it premiered in movie theaters some groups requested that the film be censored by the film board, including in a public petition on the Change.org website and successfully pressured venues to not show the film.
“We are not surprised that Erasing Dad received attacks because we show how people who claim to be helping children actually are hurting families, and making lots of money doing so,” said Gabriel Balanovsky, producer of the film. “But we have also received an outpouring of support. Our Facebook fanpage has more than 21,000 followers, many of whom suffer parental alienation.”
Argentine society has fought for freedom of expression since the end of the dictatorship that devastated the country from 1973 till 1982. Resolutions such as the one by Guillermo Blanch take us back to those days of censorship. The team behind Erasing Dad hopes the appeals court reverses this decision, as censorship is forbidden by the Argentine constitution and international treaties. The film has received many visits on Youtube and the filmmakers hope that the courts will allow them to distribute the film on this platform.
For more information and to watch trailer with English Subtitles: http://www.borrandoapapa.com.ar/erasing-dad-english/
You can request a private screening link with English Subtitles if outside of Argentina. contact: Ginger Gentile firstname.lastname@example.org
Other English Language Press:
Argentina Independent, September 29th 2014: http://www.argentinaindependent.com/socialissues/erasing-dad-a-review/
October 10th, 2014 Bubble Pod Cast: https://soundcloud.com/radioledonline/the-bubble-01-10-10-2014-radio-led-podcasts