Television Broadcasts of Movies Require Detailed Advisories, Sufficient Classification Icons and Appropriate Scheduling, Says Canadian Broadcast Standards Council

Ottawa, September 20, 2023 – The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) today released its decision concerning three movies broadcast on the discretionary television service Crave. The movies Drive My Car, Dune and Survive aired in spring 2023, all in morning or early afternoon timeslots. The CBSC concluded that all of the broadcasts should have included the classification icon at the beginning of the second hour of broadcast. It concluded that two of the movies should have featured more detailed viewer advisories. One of the movies, Survive, contained violence and coarse language that should only have aired after 9:00 pm and required a higher rating.

The CBSC received a complaint from a viewer who questioned whether the sexual content, violence and coarse language in the three movies warranted a post-9:00 pm timeslot, mention in the viewer advisories, and higher ratings. Crave committed to providing more detailed viewer advisories in future broadcasts and to broadcasting the movie Survive only after 9:00 pm.

The CBSC’s English-Language Panel examined the complaint under the relevant provisions of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ (CAB) Code of Ethics and Violence Code. The Panel concluded that all of the broadcasts should have included the classification icon at the beginning of the second hour as per the requirement of Article 4.0 of the CAB Violence Code. The Panel concluded that the advisory for the movie Drive My Car should have mentioned “sexual content” because “mature themes” was not specific enough under Clause 11 of the CAB Code of Ethics. Drive My Car was acceptable for broadcast before 9:00 pm. The Panel concluded that Dune was also acceptable for broadcast before 9:00 pm under Article 3.1 of the CAB Violence Code and PG was an acceptable rating. With respect to Survive, the Panel concluded that the violence and presence of the unedited f-word necessitated a broadcast after 9:00 pm and a 14+ rather than a PG rating. It reminded Crave that television broadcasters cannot necessarily put the same or equivalent rating on a film as that assigned to the theatrical release by a provincial film board. It also found that Crave should have mentioned the coarse language in the advisory for Survive, because, again, “mature themes” was not specific enough.

The CBSC was created in 1990 by Canada’s private broadcasters to administer the codes of standards that they established for their industry. The CBSC currently administers 5 codes which deal with ethics, equitable portrayal, violence, news and journalistic independence. Around 800 radio stations, satellite radio services, conventional and discretionary television services across Canada participate in the Council.

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All CBSC decisions, codes, and related information are available on the CBSC’s website. For more information, please visit