Des Clark, director of Australia's Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC), has claimed that Australians are concerned about rising levels of screen violence, and plans to take this into account in a review of the film classification system to take place next year.
The most serious concerns are about violence against women and children according to regular panel discussions held by the OFLC to ensure that classifications are in line with community standards.
"The majority of panellists, regardless of age, gender or family status, consistently expressed concerns about what appeared to be an increasing level of screen violence, occasionally relating it to the level of violence in the wider community," said Clark.
Since his appointment in April, Clark has instigated a restructure of the OFLC and committed to the publication of a service charter. He describes his aim as creating an "open, accountable and client-orientated" organisation that balances public demand with providing timely and accurate decisions to distributors.
The OFLC was recently criticised over its attempt to ban French title Romance which was successfully appealed. It also relaxed its classification of The Blair Witch Project after an appeal.