After movie, Malaysia also bans ‘Fifty Shades’ books

Director of the film Sam Taylor-Johnson, cast members Jamie Dornan, Dakota Johnson and author EL James arrive for the British premiere of the movie ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ in London February 12, 2015. — Reuters pic
Director of the film Sam Taylor-Johnson, cast members Jamie Dornan, Dakota Johnson and author EL James arrive for the British premiere of the movie ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ in London February 12, 2015. — Reuters pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 27 — The Home Ministry has banned the popular “Fifty Shades of Grey” erotica trilogy, citing reasons of morality, after previously prohibiting the screening of the movie adaptation locally.

The order under the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 dated February 24 banned the printing, publication and even ownership of the romance novels by British author EL James featuring sadomasochism — “Fifty Shades of Grey”, “Fifty Shades Darker” and “Fifty Shades Freed” — throughout the country, three years after the books have been available in stores.

“The printing, importation, production, reproduction, publishing, sale, issue, circulation, distribution or possession of the publication described in the Schedule, which is likely to be prejudicial to morality, are absolutely prohibited throughout Malaysia,” Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said in the order.

The Film Censorship Board (LPF) had earlier banned the film adaptation of “Fifty Shades of Grey”, reportedly saying that the movie contained unnatural and “sadistic” sex scenes, such as scenes of a woman being bound and whipped.

The “Fifty Shades” trilogy, dubbed “mommy porn”, has sold more than 100 million copies around the world since its publication by Vintage in 2012.

The softcore erotica books chronicle the relationship between virginal student Anastasia Steele and 27-year-old billionaire Christian Grey.

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