Still from Much Loved by director Nabil Ayouch
The Moroccan Ministry of Communications announced on the Maghreb Arab Press that the state-run Moroccan Cinema Centre has been banned from screening the film Much Loved in Morocco, due to its “inappropriate depiction of its women and tarnishing of the image of the country.”
Much Loved controversially tackles prostitution in Morocco, realistically depicting the gritty and glamorous lives of the women and girls.
The Moroccan Cinema Centre has refused to fund the production of the film, forcing its director Nabil Ayouch to rely on a low budget.
The film has stirred up mixed reactions from audiences, some seeing it as an ugly ad for sex in Morocco and others seeing it as holding up a much needed mirror to the society’s realities.
Ayouch is a French-Moroccan television and film director, producer and writer who previously featured in Cannes in 2012 with his film God’s Horses, competing in the Un Certain Regard section, and winning the Francois Chalais prize.
He was also the winner of the Bronze Horse Award in 2000 at the Stockholm Film Festival for his film Ali Zaoua: Prince of the Streets.