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Film festivals

Unclassified films

You must get an exemption if you want to show an unclassified film at a festival or community event.

An unclassified film is one that has not been given a classification or rating by the Commonwealth Classification Board (e.g. PG, M, R 18+) .

You do not need an exemption if the film already has a classification or rating.

Check to see if the film you want to screen has been classified.

Films which would be classified X18+ or Refused Classification will not be given an exemption.

Apply for an exemption

Apply for an exemption to the Commonwealth Classification Board:

By email

Attention: Exemptions Officer

By post

The Director
Classification Board
Locked Bag

By courier

The Director
Classification Board
Level 5, 23 – 33 Mary St

What to send when you apply

You must send information about your festival (or community event) and when the film will be shown.

A detailed synopsis (a summary of the film’s plot) must also be included.

How long does it take

There is no set time for a decision.

You should give the board a completed application at least 3 weeks before you need a decision.

If you need to know within a certain time, include that date when you apply.

Conditions for showing the film

Conditions generally apply if you get an exemption to show an unclassified film. These can include:

  • a limit on how many times the film can be shown (usually 4 times)
  • the dates it can be shown
  • audience age restrictions.

Read more about classification laws.

Last updated
10 April 2017
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