It’s time to dance like nobody’s watching because justice has been delivered to Booksmart following a dust-up earlier this week when it was revealed the in-flight version shown on Delta Airlines has some major (and unnecessary) edits. Booksmart director Olivia Wilde raised hell on Twitter this week when she was alerted that her directorial debut had a key scene focused on characters played by Kaitlyn Dever and Diana Silvers hooking up at a party edited out.
In a report from Buzzfeed via Variety, Delta has issued a statement confirming the same-sex love scene has been restored to the in-flight version of Booksmart as have any other edits made to the movie that aren’t blatantly objectionable. the airline admitted they were given an “edited” version of Booksmart but seemingly didn’t realize or check to see that the scene — which is necessary to the development of Dever’s character and pivotal to the story overall — had been omitted. Speaking on behalf of Delta, spokeswoman Emma Protis shared with Variety the airline’s promise to do better:
“We are immediately putting a new process in place for managing content available through Delta’s in-flight entertainment. Studios often provide videos in two forms: a theatrical, original version and an edited version. We selected the edited version and now realize content well within our guidelines was unnecessarily excluded from both films. We are working to make sure this doesn’t happen again.”
Wilde commented on Delta’s efforts to restore Booksmart, tweeting, “Thank you, @delta” with a link to the Variety article on Friday night.
In addition to announcing Booksmart has been returned to its original state, Delta has confirmed they are reviewing other LGBTQ+ titles and working to restore them to their original versions, too. Per Protis,
“The studio has agreed to provide a special Delta edit that retains the LGBTQ+ love scenes in both Booksmart and Rocketman that will be on our flights as soon as possible. Currently, we have Gentleman Jack, Imagine Me and You, and Moonlight onboard and countless content in the past that clearly shows it is not our practice to omit LGBTQ+ love scenes.”
Previously, Wilde criticized the edits made to Delta’s in-flight version of Booksmart, which included the aforementioned hookup scene edit as well as the word “lesbian” being cut while other curse words stayed in.
This is truly a bummer. There is no nudity in this scene. What makes it too obscene for airplane viewing? What airline? https://t.co/5QwlomY2fR
— olivia wilde (@oliviawilde) October 27, 2019
Speaking with Variety in a separate report, Wilde reacted at the time,
“I don’t understand it. There’s censorship, airline to airline, of films, which there must be some kind of governing board to determine. We rate it a certain way. If it’s not X-rated, surely it’s acceptable on an airplane. There’s insane violence of bodies being smashed in half and yet a love scene between two women is censored from the film […] It’s such an integral part of this character’s journey. I don’t understand it. My heart just broke.”
It’s unclear from Delta’s statement when the restored versions of Booksmart and other LGBTQ+ titles will be available to view. For now, we should do a fist bump that this major airline has seen reason and is doing the right thing.