08 August, 2014

Jess Franco in Canada: Posters from John Charles

The international releasing history of Jess Franco films is a complicated, sometimes confusing narrative. John Charles recently sent me some vintage posters and provided a glimpse into how some of his films were released in Canada, pointing out that the adverts were designed by CINEPIX, who also released the films there. Sometimes retitled, often cut by local censors depending on which province they were shown, the exact content and running times of these versions is an unknown. There was no MPAA there and the criteria for what would be cut or banned remains vague, according to John. He also reports that one of the strictest was the Ontario Censor Board and one must file a Freedom of Information request, cost $200 [!], for information on what scenes/films were problematic to them and the basis for their final decisions. Even mainstream Hollywood films were vulnerable to cuts and could be banned outright. 
Given these sometimes cut, retitled releases created for certain localities, there may be a whole other potential Jess Franco filmography yet to be explored. LINDA was one reported retitling of LORNA, THE EXORCIST (1974). SACISTEROTICA is better known as TWO UNDERCOVER ANGELS. And other versions may have been distributed/cut/retitled in French Canada. Thanks to John Charles for the information and posters. More will be added in the future.

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