To honour the birthday of Mr. Michael Douglas on 25th September we’re looking at the archive file for Romancing The Stone, the 1984 adventure romp directed by Robert Zemeckis.
Romancing The Stone was the first of three films in the decade that teamed Douglas with Kathleen Turner and Danny DeVito. It was submitted to the BBFC for classification in April 1984 and the Examining team recognised the swashbuckling appeal the action/adventure would have for children. The film had already been given a PG in America but BBFC Examiners identified several moments in the film that they felt were more mature than a PG certificate in the UK would allow. Drug references, nudity and a hand being chomped off by a crocodile are all specifically noted as being more suitable at 15, and it was the nude scene and crocodile that were specified in the cuts list sent to to 20th Century Fox.
Fox cut the crocodile attack as specified but there was some negotiation over the bedroom scene as they felt that it included a line of dialogue that was essential to the plot. A compromise was reached when Fox optically enlarged the shot to a head and shoulders view rather than full body, and the film was passed PG. The uncut film was submitted in 1985 for video release and the crocodile shot was once again removed before the film was passed PG. Romancing The Stone was next classified in 2000 for DVD when the uncut version was given a 12 certificate.