Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan

FCAA is Saskatchewan’s financial and consumer marketplace regulator.

General Information

  • General Information

    Saskatchewan Film Classification is responsible for administering The Film and Video Classification Act 2016. Before a film is exhibited to the public, distributed, rented, or sold in Saskatchewan, it must have been classified or exempted according to The Act.

    For more information about the classification process, select one of the options below.

     

    Film classification is obtained in one of four ways:

    1. Classification of Box Office Releases

    Since 1997, the Saskatchewan Film Classification (SFC) office has contracted with the Consumer Protection BC, Motion Picture Classification to act as its agent to classify certain types of film releases.

    As a consequence, new and previously unclassified “box office” type releases by main stream distributors and all adult videos sold, rented, or distributed, must use the BC Classification Office to obtain the appropriate Saskatchewan rating or classification.

    The current classification fee under this option is $440.00 other than adult films. For adult films, there are two possible fees:

    1. Adult film classification fee. See the BC Film Classification Fee Schedule.
    2. Decal fee. Each individual adult video sold or rented must bear an adult decal costing $2.00. These decals are obtained from the British Columbia Film Classification Office.

    To get the film classifed under this option, see Get your content rated or contact the BC office at:

    Consumer Protection BC
    200 4946 Canada Way
    Burnaby, British Columbia
    V5G 4H7
    Telephone:1-888-777-4393
    Email:classadmin@consumerprotectionbc.ca

     

    2. Classification by documentation

    If a film is not a main stream box office release or it was released prior to 1990 and has already been classified by another approved rating agency, it must still be classified in Saskatchewan, although classification can be done by a review of relevant documentation. 

    To have a film classified under this opetion, you will need to submit a request for a SFC classification by documentation form.

    Classification by documentation is suitable for films used in repertory theatres, delayed “live events” and for public one-time type exhibitions by community groups or organizations. It is also suitable for distributors of retail or rental home-use videos, DVD’s, or Blu-ray where such were not rated pursuant to the Canadian Home Video Rating System.  It is not available for adult only film.

    The fee for this option is currently $50.00 per film title.

    You should note that a classification by documentation request only applies to a film that is not a regular box office release and has already been classified by another approved agency. Approved agencies whose previous ratings are recognized for this option include: 
     

    1. Consumer Protection BC (British Columbia)
    2. Alberta Film Classification Office (ratings also used by Northwest Territory and Nunavut)
    3. Manitoba Film Classification Board
    4. Ontario Film Authority
    5. Régie du Cinema (Quebec)
    6. Nova Scotia Film Classification (ratings also used by Newfoundland, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island)
    7. The Motion Picture Association of America
    8. The British Board of Film Classification

     

    Note: If there are no classifications for the film from other approved jurisdictions or a summary report is not available, a viewing by Saskatchewan Film Classification is required before the film can be sold or exhibited.  In this case, you will need to submit a “Classification by Screening” request instead.

    The completed request should be provided to our office at least 14 days prior to the exhibition date.

    If you have any questions about the requirements, we encourage you to contact us at 306-787-5550 or toll-free at 1-877-880-5550 before you begin your submission.

    Contact/submission information
    Saskatchewan Film Classification
    500 - 1919 Saskatchewan Drive 
    REGINA, SK S4P 4H2 
    Telephone: 306-787-5550 1-877-880-5550 (toll-free) Fax: 306-787-9779 
    Email:skfilmclass@gov.sk.ca
    www.fcaa.gov.sk.ca

     

    What the SFC does:

    Once the electronic submission is received, the SFC will review the submission and provide you with its decision.   You may contact the SFC Administrative Coordinator at the address above, should you wish to discuss further. 

     

    3. Classification by Screening through Saskatchewan Film Classification

    In order to support the development of new entrants to the film-making community, small independent film makers, and repertory theatres, the Saskatchewan Film Classification will view and classify non box office type releases (as a reminder, regular box office type releases and all adult film must be rated through the Film Classification Office of Consumer Protection BC.
     
    To process a screening request we will need a copy of the DVD to be rated, a secure e-link with password, or a time and place to view the film at a theatre in Regina (contact us by phone or email to make arrangements).

    The request should be provided to our office at least 14 days prior to the exhibition date.

    If you have any questions about the requirements, we encourage you to contact us at 306-787-5550 or toll-free at 1-877-880-5550 before you begin your submission.
     

    Contact/submission information
    Saskatchewan Film Classification
    500-1919 Saskatchewan Drive
    Regina SK S4P 4H2
    Inquiry: (306) 787-5550; Toll Free: 1-877-880-5550
    Fax: (306) 787-9779
    Email:skfilmclass@gov.sk.ca
    www.fcaa.gov.sk.ca

    The fee for this option is currently $50.00 per film title. If requested, the Board will return a submitted DVD.

     

    4. Classification using the Canadian Home Video Rating System

    The Canadian Home Video Rating System (CHVRS) came into effect in 1995 and is administered by the Motion Picture Association – Canada. The CHVRS is based on a voluntary collaboration by industry members, the Canadian Motion Picture Distributors Association, and the English-speaking provincial film classification boards.

    Classification using the CHVRS is only available to Saskatchewan or BC-registered wholesale distributors who supply films to retailers. Wholesale distributors may include production studios, the owners of a film, or any other person involved in a film’s distribution. In order to be classified using the CHVRS, a film, other than an adult only film, must have been rated in another Canadian jurisdiction. After receiving a Canadian Home Video Rating System classification, the cover of a retail film must include one of the six classification symbols and the appropriate advisories.

    For more information, please contact the Motion Picture Association – Canada.

     

    Getting an exemption for film exhibitions at community events

    Exemptions from classification must be obtained from SFC for a non-profit festival, cultural or a community event, otherwise films displayed at such events must be classified in Saskatchewan.

    The request should include the title of the film, the running time, the distributor of the film and the reason for the exemption request. 

    You will need to provide the following information: 

    • a description of the organization or group applying for the exemption,
    • SMPIA membership information (as there is a specific Saskatchewan Media Production Industry Association (SMPIA) exemption in certain circumstances),
    • the title of each film to be exempted, 
    • the running time(s), 
    • the distributor(s) of the film, 
    • the reason for the exemption request,
    • classification for the film in other jurisdictions (if any), 
    • exemptions granted in other jurisdictions, and 
    • a written synopsis of the film (note in some cases the film itself, for viewing, may be requested). 

    Exemption requests should be made at least 30 days in advance of the intended screening date to ensure that the application can be processed in time for the event. There is no fee for the application. 

    To assist SFC, please provide responses as to: 

    • whether the general public or only a specific group is invited to attend the viewing of the films; 
    • whether people invited are otherwise warned about the content of the films being shown; 
    • whether, given the group involved and the nature of the film(s) being shown, approval by the film classification office and/or classification information and restrictions are necessary. 

    If granted, the exemption will be specific to the film, organization and date(s) listed in the exemption approval. 

    The film classification office may deny an exemption or may grant an exemption subject to whatever restrictions that it considers appropriate.  Examples of such restrictions include minimum age requirements, content warnings, and advertising limitations.  
     

    Simultaneous “live casts” or live event exhibitions

    Saskatchewan Film Classification  takes the position that under The Film and Video Classification Act 2016, the definition of “film” does not include simulcast exhibitions, that is, an exhibition of an event, concert or play that is occurring at the same time (that is simultaneously) as the showing of that event, concert or play in a Saskatchewan theatre. In such cases, film classification is not required. 

    The definition of film, however, does include a pre-recorded or delayed showing of an event, concert or play, and in these cases, film classification is required.  For clarity:

    • If the event is occurring at exactly the same time as it is being exhibited in Saskatchewan, film classification is not required.
    • Pre-recordings, time delayed showings or subsequent exhibition of events, concerts and plays meet the definition of film regardless of whether they were originally performed in front of an audience and these must be classified even where such events was previously exhibited simultaneously. 

    If classification is required and a classification action based on previewing the recorded event by Saskatchewan Film Classification is not practical prior to the public showing - distributors or exhibitors must submit, in advance, a request for classification along with a written summary description of the event to be shown. Upon receiving the written request, SFC may issue an interim classification along with terms and conditions, if any, based on the written description or it may exempt the film. 

    Information and clarification requests can be sent to:

    Saskatchewan Film Classification 
    500-1919 Saskatchewan Drive
    Regina SK S4P 4H2
    Inquiry: (306) 787-5550
    Fax: (306) 787-9779
    Toll Free: 1-877-880-5550
    Email:skfilmclass@gov.sk.ca

     

    Prohibited scenes

    Unless otherwise specifically approved by the Director, clause 10(2)(d) of The Film and Video Classification Regulations, 2018 (the Regulations) enables the Director to  disapprove, or require the removal of scenes from a film where such film contains or depicts any of the scenes outlined in clause 10(1)(a) or (b) of the Regulations.  These read as follows:

    10(1) (a) the coercing, through the use of threat or physical force or by other means, of a person to engage in a sexual activity, if the sexual activity that was coerced is depicted in explicit sexual scenes; or 

    (b) a person who is or who appears to be under the age of 18 or who is intended to represent a person under that age who appears: 

    (i)    nude or partially nude in a sexually suggestive context; or 
    (ii)    in a scene of explicit sexual activity.
     

    Advertising – film and video

    SFC has the authority to approve, prescribe, or prohibit advertising content, and the manner in which such advertising is displayed.

    When assessing advertising content, the SFC considers whether it:

    • contains the required classification information
    • makes the required classification information clearly apparent to those who may view, purchase, rent, lease, or exchange films
    • contains material, images, or content that people of a certain age would be precluded from viewing if contained in a film
       

    Adult film and videos

    Adult films are films that predominately depict explicit sexual scenes, or brutality, torture, maiming, or dismemberment. The Film and Video Classification Regulations 2018 describe the rules for how adult films are retailed and/or presented to the public in Saskatchewan.

    Some of the rules for adult film retailers in the province include that they must:

    • display a “no admittance to persons under age 18” sign at all entrances;
    • physically separate sections of their premises that display or advertise adult films from those that do not;
    • prevent people under age 18 from entering adult sections;
    • not allow employees under 18 years old to handle or view adult films;
    • ensure that all adult films for sale or rent on the premises are approved as adult films under the British Columbia Motion Picture Act, and that they include the appropriate decal;
    • ensure that advertising for adult films is not visible from outside the premises;
    • ensure that all films are classified or rated through the Consumer Protection BC, Motion Picture Classification, which can be contacted at:

    Consumer Protection BC, Motion Picture Classification
    200 4946 Canada Way
    Burnaby, British Columbia
    V5G 4H7
    Toll free 1 888 777- 4393

    In accordance with The Film and Video Classification Act 2016, the Saskatchewan Film Classification may, among other things:

    • Investigate into a matter arising from the Act and Regulations
    • With a warrant, or on reasonable grounds without a warrant, seize a film or video which has not been approved or classified
    • Seek compliance through the Courts
    • Issue summary offence tickets for certain offences, including:
      • Failing to display classification ratings
      • Exhibiting, distributing, selling, or renting a film that is not classified
      • Permitting any person under the specified age for a film to view, purchase, lease, or exchange that film
      • Failing to segregate adult-only films from other films, to prevent persons under 18 from viewing them
      • Failing to display signage prohibiting entrance to persons under 18, where adult-only films are sold, rented, or leased
      • Allowing persons under 18 to enter the premises where adult-only films are offered for sale

    An individual who contravenes The Act or The Regulations is guilty of an offence and is liable for a fine of up to $5,000.00 and/or six months in jail.  In the case of a corporation the maximum fine is $100,000 for a first offense and up to $500,000 for subsequent offences.

     

    Appealing Decisions of the Director 

    Appeals of Saskatchewan Film Classification decisions, including matters related to compliance, registration, classification, or disapproval, are made to the Chair of the Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority (FCAA). This includes appeals of classification decisions made by the Consumer Protection BC, Motion Picture Classification office, as agent for Saskatchewan Film Classification.

    Beginning an appeal

    See Part V of The Film and Video Classification Act 2016, in summary, a person who wishes to appeal a decision should commence an appeal by delivering a written notice of the appeal to the Chair of the FCAA. The appeal must be submitted within 30 days of the decision under consideration.

    Address for serving an appeal:

    Appeal Committee – The Film and Video Classification Act
    c/o Linda Patton
    Executive Asst. FCAA
    Suite 601 - 1919 Saskatchewan Drive
    Regina, SK S4P 4H2
    Phone(306) 787-5646
    Fax (306) 787-9006
    E-mail:linda.patton@gov.sk.ca

    Fees for appeals
    Where the appeal involves a decision regarding disapproval of the film, a requirement to remove a portion of the film, or classification, the person appealing the decision shall submit a $500 fee along with the notice of appeal.

    Premises, Equipment and Resources in certain Appeals
    If the appellant is the person who submitted the film for approval and classification, that person must: 

    • at the applicant’s own expense, provide premises in Saskatchewan, acceptable to the FCAA, at which to hold the appeal hearing; and
    • at the applicant’s own expense, provide the equipment and resources necessary for the FCAA to view the film.

    The appeal will be in public, except while viewing prohibited portions of a film.

    Duties of the Appeal Committee
    The FCAA is not bound by the rules of evidence but will receive or hear submissions, unless it is decided that it is irrelevant to the appeal.

    The decision will:

    • be in writing;
    • state the reasons for the decision;
    • be sent to the appellant; and,
    • be made available to any person on request.

    The decision may confirm, vary, or replace the original decision, including making an order for costs that the FCAA considers appropriate.  The FCAA appeal decision is final.

    For more information about appealing SFC decisions, see The Film and Video Classification Act 2016 and Regulations.

     

    Filing a complaint

    Any person in Saskatchewan can file either a complaint with the Saskatchewan Film Classification. Accordingly, if you believe that a breach of The Film and Video Classification Act 2016 has occurred, contact the SFC in one of the following ways.

    Formal complaints
    Fill out a written formal complaint if you are requesting that the Director conducts an investigation into your specific concern. Attach any evidence (receipts, contracts, witnesses, photos) that may assist with the investigation. A letter with details or a completed complaint form can be mailed, faxed, or emailed. After submitting a formal complaint, you will be contacted and kept informed of the investigation progress.

    Anonymous complaints
    It is possible to file an anonymous complaint, but there must be some evidence of wrongdoing included to support your concern. Since the complaint is filed anonymously, you will not be personally informed of the actions or findings. An anonymous letter can be mailed, faxed, or emailed to the SFC.

    To file a complaint, submit the complaint form to the address below:

    Saskatchewan Film Classification 
    Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan
    Suite 500, 1919 Saskatchewan Dr.
    Regina, SK S4P 4H2
    Phone: (306) 787-5550 Fax: (306) 787-9779
    Toll-free: 1-877-880-5550
    E-mail: skfilmclass@gov.sk.ca

     

    Consumer Protection Division

    Suite 500, 1919 Saskatchewan Drive

    Regina, Saskatchewan S4P 4H2

    Tel: (306)787-5550

    Toll free: (877)880-5550

    Fax: (306)787-9779

    Email: consumerprotection@gov.sk.ca

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