back to article Cannibal's legal objection hamstrings German horror film

A horror film has been banned in Germany because it infringes on the personality rights of the German man who killed and ate a voluntary victim on Christmas Day in 2001. Rohtenburg is a horror film about a man who engages in very similar acts to Armin Meiwes, who was arrested in 2002 and convicted of murder in 2005. Meiwes …


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  1. Deng
    Paris Hilton

    only eight and half years!

    Doesn't seem much of a sentence for a blatant nutter?

    I can imagine him talking to the Probie board, ah yes I don't eat meat anymore gives me terrible wind... oh yes and of course horrible repercussions for the ingredients in the main course...

    paris she is a meat eater

  2. Danyer
    Thumb Down

    I don't understand

    From the article: The German constitution contains protections for an individual's personality. It says: "Every person shall have the right to free development of his personality insofar as he does not violate the rights of others or offend against the constitutional order or the moral law."

    OK, so he didn't offend against the moral law?

  3. Maksim Rukov

    Mr Meiwes has guts... bone up on German law and axe this movie's release. He's really given the finger to the producers, who must've stumped up a lot of cash to cook up this movie (maybe it even cost them an arm and a leg?). I hope the actors got severance and weren't simply given the chop.

    Given what's at steak, do you think they will organ-ise an appeal?

    Mine's the one with the dark dripping pockets...

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Intellectual Property Rights?

    Look, I think Intellectual Property rights are important M-kay, but when you start giving IP rights to Cannibals to ensure their 'trade mark' eating human flesh isn't infringed upon that's just going toooooo far.

    What next, can he patent the business process of meeting people for the purposes of eating their flesh? Just because it was a novel Christmas lunch doesn't mean he should get the patent on it! Patenting such a business process would be silly, stupid, counter productive.

    I know the Lisbon agenda was to increase IP rights as a means to expand business... but all you are doing is removing the right to eat human flesh from other cannibals making Europe less competitive in the international flesh munching market. Those Chinese cannibals are eating us for lunch out there!

    And as for protection for 95 years for each individual performance of cannibalism by this guy!? WTF are you thinking? He'll be dead and basted long before then! Who will remember who ate whom, when the witnesses to the contracts have long died and gone to oven?

    So in conclusion I think calling his claim an Intellectual Property is a misnomer because it's not really property. So please don't do it.

  5. Anonymous Coward

    You're so vain

    I bet you think this film is about you.. you're so vain...

    Too early to even take my coat off and my taxi is still outside.

    Anonymous 'cos I don't wanna get ate.

  6. Thorsten


    The tagline on the poster says "some stories should never be told". So the court simply agreed with that statement. Can't see the producers of the film complain too much about the ruling.

    Skull & bones for obvious reasons...

  7. pctechxp

    What the....?

    Has the world gone mad?

    If you are a CRIIMINAL convicted of such a serious crime you should fbe stripped of all rughts just as you did to your victim, whether he/she did supposedly agree or not (I would indeed doubt they were mentally fit if they agreed to be killed and eaten)

    Human animals such as this along with the likes of child abusers, murders, rapists do not deserve respect, they deserve the death penalty and to hell with their personality rights.

    Some posters may say I sound like a certain columnist, if so, so be it, he would have a point.

    Flame on!

  8. Dan
    Paris Hilton

    Legal clause?

    "Every person shall have the right to free development of his personality insofar as he does not violate the rights of others or offend against the constitutional order or the moral law."

    Well, he did offend according to the law (and moral law, I guess), so is aforementioned right to the free development of his personality not forfeited?

    Paris, because she's also eaten a pe.... no, maybe I'll just go.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton


    "Every person shall have the right to free development of his personality insofar as he does not violate the rights of others or offend against the constitutional order or the moral law."

    So why is his particular personality of eating people being protected?

    Paris, because she's probably been eaten a few times.

  10. Duncan

    this ruling

    May take some time to digest.

  11. E_Nigma
    Paris Hilton


    A film got banned because it offended ONE person?! And that's because that man didn't find the way it depicts an act similar to the one that got him convicted for murder flattering?! What's next? Ban all films, books and plays in which murder, rape and robbery look bad? There seems to be so little common sense in the legal systems worldwide nowadays. :(

    Paris, because she's not offended by films depicting acts similar to hers.

  12. Pete Burgess
    Thumb Up


    "Reports have emerged that in prison he has become a vegetarian" - I laughed out loud at this, it's really not the sort of stuff you can make up! Thanks for cheering me up on a Thursday morning!

  13. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    What was that ?

    "That right allows the author of a copyright work not to have his work treated in a derogatory way"

    Wait a minute, you mean that if Gigli was made by a German guy, nobody could pan it in Germany ?

    Do you seriously mean to say that, if John Romero was German, no one in Germany could have stated just how awful, lame, unoriginal, uninspiring and bug-ridden Daikatana was ?

    If that in indeed true, then no customer satisfaction forums are possible in Germany.

    The mind boggles.

  14. Bad Beaver


    the producers should have cut him a deal. SCNR

  15. Snake Plissken

    Wonder if...

    He gets royalties for Rammsteins "Mein Teil" then...

  16. Paul Buxton

    Eating Frankfurters

    "Every person shall have the right to free development of his personality insofar as he does not violate the rights of others or offend against the constitutional order or the moral law."

    So eating someone's penis (and not in a nice way) doesn't violate the rights of others or offend against the constitutional order or the moral law in Germany then? I knew they were keen on Frankfurters but this is maybe going too far.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Dan and @Paul Buxton

    If you don't understand what "insofar as" means I suggest you don't try to become lawyers. Clue: it does not mean the same as "provided that" or "if".

  18. TeeCee Gold badge

    He's become a Vegetarian?

    Anyone unlucky enough to be in a Persistant Vegetative State might want to regain consciousness before he gets out then.

  19. Eric Crippen

    News vs. Profit

    I agree with Meiwes on this one. This wasn't a news story or biography written about him. It was a for-profit movie that the German govt. saw as using his persona without his permission. If he didn't feel like nailing Rammstein because he didn't object to that song, then that's his business (good song by the way).

    I seem to remember that other people had answered his ads to be eaten (though not killed). Yes, I think they have mental problems, but at least it was consensual.

  20. Shakje


    Common sense gone mad! Think of the children!

  21. David Barrett


    My understanding of the case was that the 'victim' volunteered to be killed an eaten.

    Thats assisted suicide if you ask me... apart from the eating... thats just weird..

  22. Neil

    @Paul Buxton

    What, there's a nice way to eat someones penis?

    I know to avoid the chipolata's on a stick at your parties then.

  23. Stephen Stagg


    So, it seems that I'm somewhat in the minority here, but I don't see what is so wrong with that the guy did. No matter how perverted I may think the act of cannibalism, I'm not arrogant enough to want to force my morals on someone who has not involuntarily harmed anyone.

    I think I'll now lie down with my hands on my head, and wait for the morality police to come knocking.

  24. Simon B

    8.5yrs for murder? Bargain!

    8.5yrs for murder? Bargain!

  25. Tom Turck


    and people say California is crazy. 8.5 jahr? Stimmt? Is cannibalism legal in Germany too?

  26. Juliette Martens
    Dead Vulture

    Hide ye, God-fearing citizens

    Cop on to yourselves, the infringement of privacy is a completely different case to the one he was tried and convicted for, so stop this Mary Whitehouse-meets-The Daily Mail shouting of "such a monster must not be allowed any legal rights".

    If you want a country where the law does a cheerful foxtrot with complete bollocks, go live in Zimbabwe.

    Re the 8.5 years, I'm quite shocked it's so low too but it's possible that he'll be packed away to Arkham asylum after his term's up - that's what often happens in Holland anyway. The beauty of this system is that he could remain there indefinitely.

    What's that thing in the vulture's mouth, leaking blood...?

  27. Anonymous Coward

    biggest problem with this

    Eating the flesh of your same species is an invitation to prions. If you don't know what they are, look 'em up and be thankful you don't have any.

  28. pctechxp

    @AC - prions

    Ah but we meat eaters might, BSE/vCJD etc.

    Thats why if you were born or had surgery in the 80s you cant give blood.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture

    @AC - prions

    Nor can you donate blood in the US if you lived in the UK for more than six months any time in the 80s or 90s.

    Even if you've been a vegetarian for all those years!

    Gotta love those one-size-fits-all policies.

  30. Anonymous Coward

    if you eat someone...

    You deserve to get made fun of...

    What the hell is wrong with Germany? Is Hitler back? Because they're supporting murderers, and their asinine demands, AGAIN!

  31. Patrick R

    IT angle ?

    Oh yes, that story was featured in an episode of the "IT Crowd" as well. He must have missed it.

  32. J
    Black Helicopters


    OMGZBBQ, a society that treats (or at least tries to?) people as citizens with rights instead of consumers and merchandise to be exploited by corporations! Where is this world going!? Will someone think of the children? (besides the marketers)

  33. le jono


    I don't understand. A humans rights should be taken away if they themselves has taken the life of another human.

    Thats my view anyway but who cares cause I dont vote ;)

  34. Anonymous Coward

    Bite me!

    "Reports have emerged that in prison he has become a vegetarian."

    Whereas previously he was a humanitarian?

  35. fred scuttle
    Paris Hilton

    Smashing - can't cook won't cook

    I suppose Cock-au-vin is out of the question now in case I upset his IPR!!!!!!!!!

    Paris Hilton

    Paris, coz she's had a cock-a-too!!

  36. rick buck

    Eating raw meat can have bad health consequences.

    The sick part of this story is that the judicial system only gave 8 &1/2 years for murder of an idiot.

    Murder is Murder, and the courts are not dissuading this kind of crime by handing out 8 &1/2 year punishment for the seriously heinous crime of murder, even of idiots!

    I hope he gets out and knocks off the judge...

    >'recon then he will see, an eye for an eye?

  37. pctechxp

    I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti

    tha tha tha

    When asked for comment about the Judge who sent him down the cannibal replied

    I'm giving very serious thought to eating his wife

  38. Baldauf

    @ Patrick R

    wasn't the victim working for Siemens?

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    What difference does it make if they don't show it in Germany?

    That means it's still being released elsewhere..

    So what is the point really? Germans just need to hop across the border or wait 'til it comes out on DVD and import it.

    This is nothing to do with his rights, it is nothing but censorship.

    That's like saying newspapers can publish naked photos of me in any country in the world but not my own. I would still feel violated. Everyone would know about the photos and be able to access them easily, especially online. So what good does it do in the end ?

    I agree with the poster at the top. When you kill someone, you ought to have your rights take away, just as you took away someone elses.

    I don't see how they have the gall to talk about being made to sleep on a hard matress or something like that, complaining it infringes their rights, when the person they killed had a right to life which was taken away, as well as their right to live in a decent environment..

    This ruling doesn't even make any sense because there's no proof the film is even based upon him. So his rights are not infringed unless the man in the film has the same name etc as him. Which they obviously would not do. There isn't really such a thing as a unique person or story in this life and we all know there are a million movies with similar themes (including eating people!) So why give a killer special treatment? I think maybe the people who made the pact should have spoken to a lawyer first ...

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