Following a lawsuit by Promouvoir, an association defending "judeo-christian and family values", controversial French title Baise-moi has been given an X rating by France's Conseil d'Etat effectively banning it from French theatres.

Baise-moi, produced and distributed in France by former PolyGram subsidiary Pan Europeenne, had been rated PG-16 by the board of censors. It opened June 28 and scored a healthy 5,634 admissions from only 64 screens, despite the fact that France was playing Portugal that night in the semi-finals of the Euro 2000 soccer tournament.

But the French high court, Conseil d'Etat, ruled June 30 that Baise-moi is "mostly made up of very violent scenes interspersed with scenes involving non-simulated sex, whereas other sequences do not denounce violence against women, contrary to the directors' alleged intentions." The X-rating effectively bans the film from beingexhibited in France where there are no longer many specialist venues.

Adapted by Virginie Despentes from her own best-selling novel and co-directed with porn actress Coralie Trinh Thi, the film features two former porn stars, Karen Bach and Raffaela Anderson, in the lead roles.

Handled on the international market by StudioCanal's classics division Wild Bunch, Baise-moi had already racked up about $1m - or about three quarters of the film's budget - in foreign sales, prior to its French opening.