The third Harry Potter film, Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban, has received a unique newrating in the Netherlands. Nicam, the organisation responsible for theage-limits assigned to films in Holland, will introduce the advisory age of 9years.

Normally, films are branded with one of the four existingratings: All Ages, 6, 12 and 16 years old. The introduction of the 9-year-oldlimit is currently only a one-off experiment.

The step has been taken based on experiences with theprevious two Potter films in Holland.Nicam received many complaints from parents who thought the age limit of 6years was too low considering the often frightening scenes in the ChrisColumbus-directed adaptations of J.K. Rowling's bestsellers. On the other handa limit of 12 years was considered too high.

The academic advisors of Nicam agree that the gap between 6and 12 years is too big for this type of film. They state that children aroundthe age of nine have a better sense of understanding the difference betweenfiction and non-fiction and are therefore less frightened by scary images.

After the premiere of HarryPotter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban on June 3 Nicam will investigate theresults. Public reaction will be included in any decision as to whether to addthe 9-year-old age limit as a permanent category in the Netherlands.

The film launches in the UK as a PG on an exclusive Mondayrelease - a national holiday in the territory - on May 31 and then rolls out inNorth America (also PG) and much of Europe and South America over the followingweekend.