Jennifer Lawrence has been removed from Hunger Games posters in Israel to avoid offending religious audiences.
Lawrence’s image has been removed from posters for the fourth and final Hunger Games movie because depictions of the female figure makes many ultra-Orthodox Jews uncomfortable and angry.
Because of the potential for vandalism and unrest, residents in ultra-Orthodox areas like Bnei Brak and Israel’s capital city Jerusalem are seeing a censored version of the poster, which features only an image of a fiery crown, and omits the star, Lawrence’s character, Katniss Everdeen.
A representative for a PR firm tasked with working on the Hunger Games sequel states:
We discovered that public posters with the image of a female are often torn down in Jerusalem, while Bnei Brak does not allow posters with female images.
Discussing the censored movie posters, Liron Suissa, VP marketing of the company responsible for the posters, Nur Star Media, said that it was not the first time the company had refrained from hanging posters featuring women in Jerusalem and Bnei Brak:
Unfortunately we are subject to unofficial coercion that forces us to be more careful. We have had endless vandalization, and clients prefer not to take the chance. We allow everything, but we recommend hanging another visual when necessary. The decision is the client’s.
Not everyone is happy with the censorship. Uri Regev, head of Hiddush, an NGO that campaigns for religious freedom and equality, said:
It is difficult to estimate the damage that capitulation to extremism does to the Jewish faith. We need to make clear that there is absolutely no connection between Judaism and censorship of the image of Katniss Everdeen.
Haaretz reports that a heated struggle over the display of female images in Jerusalem has been going on in recent years.