By substituting one expletive for another, “The King’s Speech” was given a family-friendly rating of PG-13. Gone was the F-word that figures repeatedly in a pivotal scene between speech therapist Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush) and the stammering King George VI (Colin Firth). Instead, the monarch utters a four-letter word for feces over and over.
This toned-down version of the Best Picture champ debuted in 1,011 theaters nationwide on Friday and made $1.2 million over the weekend. That marks a drop of 23% from the takings of the original R-rated film the weekend before. However, given that it was the 19th week of release for the “The King’s Speech,” this is certainly a respectable figure to add to the cumulative $135 million domestic gross.
The DVD and Blu-ray editions of the four-time Oscar winner are due out on April 19. This PG-13 version should do well in the educational video market. As Eric Lomis, who heads up the theatrical distribution and home entertainment wing of the Weinstein Co., noted when makng the announcement of the re-rating, “The action enables those to whom it speaks most directly — young people who are troubled by stuttering, bullying and similar trials — to see it.”