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elton john A still from the Elton John movie Rocketman.

The Pacific nation of Samoa has banned the Elton John biopic Rocketman because of its depictions of homosexuality.

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About 97% of people in Samoa identify as Christian, and the society is generally considered conservative and traditional. Under Samoas 2013 Crimes Act, sodomy is deemed an offense that is punishable by up to seven years in prison, even if both parties consent.

Samoas principal censor Leiataua Niuapu Faaui told the Samoa Observer on Tuesday that the homosexual activity depicted on screen violated laws and didnt sit well with the countrys cultural and Christian beliefs.

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The censor did concede to the newspaper that “Its a good story, in that its about an individual trying to move on in life.”

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Apollo Cinemas Samoa wrote on Facebook that “due to censoring issues we have had to cancel Rocketman.”

The movie examines Johns sexuality and relationship with then-manager John Reid. It stars Taron Egerton who does his own singing as John in the musical fantasy that aims to capture the essence of the musicians life.

A Russian distributor censored scenes from Rocketman that featured gay sex and drug use, and John wrote in a joint statement with the filmmakers that it was a “sad reflection of the divided world we still live in and how it can still be so cruelly unaccepting of the love between two people.”

Russian gay rights activists and prominent figures denounced the move. Although homosexuality is not criminalized in Russia, animosity toward gay people remains strong.

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