Sony Pictures Classics has won its appeal to overrule the R ratingon Christian Carion's Oscar nominated Joyeux Noel (Merry Christmas) and will release the picture in the USwith a PG-13 rating in March.

The MPAA appeals board agreed by a two-thirds majority to overturnthe earlier ruling, which had been based on elements of war violence and abrief scene of sexuality.

'It is important this film is PG-13 because it is a movieyoung people should see,' Carion said. 'It has a message of peace,not violence, which is very important nowadays, especially for our youth.'

Joyeux Noel is inspired by the true story of a temporary truce betweenFrench, German and British first world war soldiers who stage a football gameone Christmas Eve.