The following is a list of items that are forbidden from being brought on to Delta flights:
- Aerosol cans
- Coming-of-age teen comedies that say the word “vagina.”
During a Q&A after a screening of Booksmart at the SCAD Savannah Film Festival, director Olivia Wilde expressed her disappointment in learning that Delta Airlines used a third-party censor to edit out not just dialogue, but entire scenes from its in-flight version of the film. Wilde noted that these edits have a sexist bias, one that codes discussion or depiction of women’s bodies (by female characters) as dirty, but keeps in scenes of boys behaving lewdly, like “George deep-throating a microphone.” Wilde told the audience:
What we discovered is that on certain planes, this film has been edited in a very slanted manner. That there are certain words and certain scenes that are cut out, that aren’t the swear words. It’s “fuck, fuck, fuck” all day, but they removed the word “masturbation,” they removed the word “vagina.” So I’m just curious what a woman is supposed to take from that. That it’s an obscenity. That it’s inappropriate. You can say “fuck, fuck, fuck” … But you can’t show the Barbie sequence when they take off their Barbie clothes and have Barbie boobs, which by design, have no genitals, which is the entire fucking point of the scene.
Wilde also expressed anger that an entire queer love scene was edited out for in-flight viewers, explaining that the version she saw on a Delta flight removed the hookup scene between characters played by Diana Silvers and Kaitlyn Dever. She theorized they cut it “because it might suggest to you that women, I don’t know, have bodies or can experience pleasure, or deserve it. And so that is … it’s a problem. It’s a problem.”
Wilde advised that other female filmmakers watch airline edits of their films to see what else is being removed without their knowledge or permission. “The other word they took out was ‘UTI,’ which, I was like … I feel like we should tell people about UTIs! It’s important. But yeah, I think it’s like, make movies that are, you know, authentic, and talk about real things, and then protect those movies and don’t let anybody censor you.”