It has been revealed that the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) made no mandatory cuts to The Hunger Games. The film, which is currently dominating the UK box office, was cut by seven seconds to "reduce an emphasis on blood and injury", but it was distributor Lionsgate that chose to make the edits. Considering that the film covers the dark subject of children being made to kill each other for entertainment value, it is unsurprising that the BBFC were prepared to award a 15 certificate, and be especially wary about any material highlighting that central conceit. They were shown an unfinished version of the film by the studio and, as BBFC policy head David Austin told BBC Radio 5, the distributor Lionsgate wanted a 12a classification, so were looking of ways to achieve that. When the BBFC highlighted material that exceeded its 12a classification, the studio took the suggestions and made cuts and digital alterations to change these. Based on The Hunger Games performance, Lionsgate will no doubt feel justified by their cuts. While it is unlikely that seven seconds of blood splashes would have seen a vastly different commercial response, a 15 certificate from the BBFC would have certainly seen a reduction in those lucrative figures. With the books main demographic being young adults, it is safe to say that the distributor was counting on those fans being at the front of the movie queues. While this might seem to be a good platform to complain that the BBFC are out of touch with the audience, it is important to distinguish that it was Lionsgate that made the decision to make these changes, as it demonstrates that the studio were primarily focused on achieving that rating. This gives the impression that the distributor does not necessarily understand its own film, as depicting the violence is important to the narrative of The Hunger Games, and for emphasising the weight of the subject matter. On the other hand, a £5 million UK box office gross suggests that no one at Lionsgate will be losing any sleep over the decision, so maybe losing seven seconds was a necessary sacrifice in order to avoid the distributor cutting any deeper. Have you seen The Hunger Games? Did the BBFC go far enough in the changes they requested in order for the film to be given a 12A certificate?