January 19, 2000 10:59pm
Bullock stirs passions with jungle sex film
by: John Dempsey
(NEW YORK, NY) -- Sandra Bullock fans who want to see the actress engage in "passionate canine-style lovemaking" could soon be in for a treat.
B-movie king Roger Corman, for whom Bullock made the low-budget exploitation film "Fire on the Amazon," before she became a box office star in 1994's "Speed," now wants to release it in theaters.
Trouble is, the film got slapped with the dreaded NC-17 tag by the ratings board of the Motion Picture Assn. of America, and Corman is hopping mad.
"The board says the movie is obscene, which is ridiculous," said Corman, who plans to screen the movie for potential buyers at the American Film Market and NATPE convention of TV executives later this month.
Films tagged with an NC-17 -- no one 17 and under admitted -- are generally consigned to the fringes of the movie world, because of a misplaced perception that they depict extreme pornography or violence.
"I'm not going to release an NC-17 movie because too many theater chains in the U.S. won't take it," he said. "And a number of video stores, including Blockbuster, won't carry a movie with an NC-17."
What gets Corman's goat, he said, is that when he originally submitted the $2 million film in the wake of the "Speed" triumph, the MPAA gave it an R. He delayed the release for a few years to focus on ultimately unsuccessful talks to sell his movie library, and then scheduled it for spring 1999.
However, Corman made the mistake of adding five seconds to a sex scene in which, as the press material describes it, Bullock and co-star Craig Sheffer "drink a hallucinogenic liquid drug from an Indian ceremonial bowl. This spawns the couple's passionate canine-style lovemaking in the jungle."
Corman resubmitted the movie, and the MPAA changed the rating to an NC-17.
The distributor has trimmed a few seconds from the disputed scene and submitted it once again to the ratings board, which Corman said will give him its report in the next 10 days.
Corman vowed not to make any more cuts, even if the board still insists on an NC-17. In that event, he said, "I may start looking at my legal options."
``Fire on the Amazon'' was directed on location by Luis Llosa, who has since shot "The Specialist" with Sylvester Stallone, and "Anaconda." Corman was executive producer.