Film ratings to give parents more information

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Major U.S. film studios including Walt Disney Co. and Time Warner Inc.'s Warner Bros. unveiled a campaign to help parents screen what their children see in movie theaters.

The effort will highlight descriptions that explain industry ratings such as PG-13 and R, Chris Dodd, chairman and chief executive officer of the Motion Picture Association of America, and John Fithian, president of the National Association of Theatre Owners, said Tuesday in Las Vegas

New ratings materials will highlight terms such as "drug references" and "battle sequences" along with the letter designations moviegoers have seen for years, according to a public service announcement unveiled with the campaign (www.filmratings.com). Mr. Dodd and Mr. Fithian were in Las Vegas for the movie exhibitors' annual CinemaCon convention.

"The campaign we are announcing today focuses on these descriptors, giving parents the information they need to navigate the rating system and movies coming to their theaters," according to a transcript of Mr. Dodd's remarks provided by the MPAA. "We've produced something we believe you will be proud to showcase at your theaters."

Films rated PG or higher have included such descriptions since 1990, according to Mr. Dodd. The campaign is built around a "Check the Box" theme that gives parents a snapshot of the content in each film.

The MPAA system includes five ratings.

G is for general audiences, while PG suggests parental guidance. PG-13 says some material may be inappropriate for children under 13, and R requires an adult to accompany moviegoers under age 17.

Films with NC-17 ratings shouldn't be shown to teens under age 18.

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