How Rebel Wilson Fought the MPAA to Change The Hustle’s R-Rating to PG-13
Rebel Wilson fought the MPAA for The Hustle‘s PG-13 rating. The upcoming comedy is another take on 1988’s Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, which was a remake of the 1964 comedy Bedtime Story. In the original movies, two male scam artists are trying to manipulate rich women out of their money. The Hustle takes the same premise and flips it, making Wilson and co-star Anne Hathaway the scam artists as they go after the money of rich men. So far, the trailer has been getting positive responses from moviegoers.
After going through the ratings process, the MPAA gave The Hustle an R-rating. However, Rebel Wilson did not believe the comedy deserved the rating, which she called “rude” in a recent interview. Since she was a producer on the movie and had so much invested in it, she decided to go into the arbitration hearing and fight for a PG-13 rating. Wilson has a law degree and she stated her case. When asked how she went about doing so, Wilson says she compared The Hustle to similar PG-13 comedies, like Anchorman, which starred men and pointed out a double standard. She then went even further to point out PG movies that represent the double standard too. These movies included Disney’s Frozen, 101 Dalmations, and Muppet Treasure Island, which all include sexualized comedy in a family friendly movie.
After five minutes of arbitration, Rebel Wilson won her fight with the MPAA and The Hustle now has a PG-13 rating, which is huge for the box office. An R-rating could cut out a large section of the audience, therefore cutting into the box office profits. Wilson is obviously proud of the work she put in behind-the-scenes to get the comedy off of the ground. She originally pitched the movie to the studio as “something like Dirty Rotten Skanks,” which may have been where the original R-rating came from. With that being said, The Hustle will be able to be seen by a wider audience now.
Rebel Wilson recently co-produced and starred in the 2019 comedy Isn’t It Romantic, which is a satire of the rom-com genre. The actress came under fire for claiming she was the first plus-sized actress to star in a romantic comedy late last year while promoting the comedy. Social media exploded and pointed out that there were many plus-sized women who came before her and demanded she take back her comments and apologize. She was later accused of blocking her critics on social media, but ended up making a public apology afterwards.
The Hustle hits theaters on May 10th, which will see it compete with Detective Pikachu and Tolkien. At this time, it seems like beating Ryan Reynolds as the little yellow thunder rodent at the box office is going to be a pretty rough battle. However, Rebel Wilson and Anne Hathaway should be able to bring a lot of people into theaters for some laughs when all is said and done. You can check out the interview with Wilson and Hathaway below, thanks to the BBC America YouTube channel.