Universal Pictures will release a slightly shorter and marginally less explicit cut of the 18-certificate Sacha Baron Cohen comedy on 24 July
As if one Bruno was not enough for UK cinemagoers, the studio behind Sacha Baron Cohen's flouncing comedy creation is now poised to introduce another. Happily, reports suggest that the second Bruno will be less offensive, more mild of manner and marginally shorter. Where the original Bruno comes with a prohibitive 18 certificate, the second is rated a teen-friendly 15.
Universal Pictures is planning to unveil the alternative Bruno on 24 July as a means to mop up younger viewers. "We saw an opportunity to service the audience," explained David Kosse, president of Universal Pictures International. "And it should also help the gross." Kosse claims that this marks the first time that two versions of the same film are screened simultaneously in the UK.
Baron Cohen's film has earned a reported £5m at UK cinemas since it opened last Friday – the second-biggest opening ever in Britain for an 18-certificate movie. However, there have been reports of hundreds of teenaged viewers being refused entry to cinemas, leading studio executives to conclude that there remains a large, untapped market for the picture.
The 15-certificate Bruno will run 1min 50sec shorter than the original version. Editors have trimmed several of the more sexually explicit moments, including a visit to a swingers' party and a sequence in which the hero visits a medium and simulates oral and anal sex with a ghost. "A lot of that scene" has been edited out, says Kosse.