James Gunn Confirms Scooby-Doo Was Given R Rating

James Gunn reflects on the making of the first Scooby-Doo movie, 15 years after its release...

Long before writing and directing the two Guardians of the Galaxy movies and finding himself steering the Marvel Cosmic Universe, James Gunn worked on the screenplay for the two live-action Scooby-Doo films. The first of those, 2002’s Scooby-Doo: The Movie, is now 15 years old. It was notable at the time for attracting terrible reviews, but doing well enough to generate a sequel two years later.

Reflecting on the first film now, Gunn confirmed the rumor that it was originally given an R rating by the MPAA. As he recalled in a Facebook post commemorating the movie’s release, “I had written an edgier film geared toward older kids and adults, and the studio ended pushing it into a clean cut children’s film.”

He continued, “And, yes, the rumors are true — the first cut was rated R by the MPAA, and the female stars’ cleavage was CGI’d away so as not to offend. But, you know, such is life. I had a lot of fun making this movie, regardless of all that. And I was also able to eat, buy a car, and a house because of it.”

Gunn also revealed that he read every single review he could find of the movie, which wasn’t his happiest moment — only to learn the next morning that it had made $18 million on its opening day and that his life was going to change as a result. And it did — although he was offered the likes of The Jetsons and Captain Caveman thanks to Scooby-Doo‘s success, he chose instead to write the screenplay for Zack Snyder’s remake of Dawn of the Dead. Shrewd intuition there, Mr. Gunn…

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