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BBC cut jokes from Christmas classic Nativity! on iPlayer over fears of causing offence

BBC cut jokes from Christmas classic Nativity! on iPlayer over fears of causing offence…despite U certificate movie being suitable for four-year-olds

  • Nativity!, the 2009 film, was censored after being uploaded to BBC’s iPlayer 
  • Certain gags and lines were edited out for fears that they would offend viewers 
  • An uncensored version of the film has since been put on the streaming service 










The popular Christmas film Nativity! was censored by the BBC after it was put on iPlayer for fears it would offend some viewers.

The full version of the movie was not available on the streaming service despite it being given a U certificate, meaning it was deemed appropriate for audiences aged four and older. 

Viewers were unaware they were watched an edited version, the Daily Star reports. 

The movie's unedited version, starring TV veterans Martin Freeman, Jason Watkins and Ashley Jensen, is also available on Netflix

The movie’s unedited version, starring TV veterans Martin Freeman, Jason Watkins and Ashley Jensen, is also available on Netflix 

The popular Christmas film Nativity! was censored by the BBC after it was put on iPlayer for fears it would offend some viewers

The popular Christmas film Nativity! was censored by the BBC after it was put on iPlayer for fears it would offend some viewers

The sections which were cut out included Alan Carr’s character theatre reviewer Patrick Burns saying: ‘You’re no-one if you haven’t had a bad review off Patrick Burns.

‘That’s why they call them Burns’ victims.’

Another edited out scene featured a classroom assistant played by Marc Wootton talking about which pupils should be cast in a play, calling one student a ‘good dancer’ and ‘eye candy for the girls’.

A full version of the movie was put on iPlayer after the Daily Star approached the BBC, the paper said.

Alan Carr

Marc Wootton

The censored versions cut out gags, including some from a theatre reviewer played by Alan Carr and a classroom assistant played by Marc Wootton

A BBC spokesperson said: ‘The film Nativity! has been on BBC channels several times in recent weeks.

‘BBC iPlayer has now been updated to the version that was broadcast on BBC One on 28 November.’

The movie’s unedited version, starring TV veterans Martin Freeman, Jason Watkins and Ashley Jensen, is also available on Netflix.

Film magazine Empire called it a ‘sunny, sweet and family-friendly seasonal fare’ in a review when the movie first came out in 2009. 



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