Oscar-winning director Ang Lee's erotic espionage thriller, "Lust, Caution," has been given an NC-17 rating by the Motion Picture Assn. of America, signaling to parents that the film may be inappropriate for audiences 17 and under, and restricting admission to only those 18 and older. The film earned the MPAA's strict rating because of "some explicit sexuality."
Focus Features, which will premiere the movie Friday at the Venice Film Festival, issued a statement Thursday by chief executive James Schamus noting that the company has accepted the rating without protest. Schamus co-wrote the screenplay with Wang Hui Ling.
Based on a short story by Eileen Chang, the Mandarin-language film is set against the backdrop of World War II and Japan's occupation of the Chinese city of Shanghai. The plot revolves around a group of Chinese students who plan to assassinate a Japanese collaborator. The film stars Tony Leung, Tang Wei, Joan Chen and Wang Leehom.
Lee previously directed such films as "Brokeback Mountain," for which he won the Academy Award for best director, and "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon."
"Lust, Caution" will be released Sept. 28 in New York City, and then open wider Oct. 5, including the Landmark in West Los Angeles and the ArcLight in Hollywood.