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MPAA Ratings Guru Joan Graves Recovering After Fall From CinemaCon Stage

Graves spent 30 years assigning ratings for films

MPAA senior vice president Joan Graves, who was responsible for assigning movie ratings for 30 years, is recovering after a fall from the stage at CinemaCon.

Graves fell and suffered a head injury Tuesday after receiving an award for her career as chair of the MPAA ratings board at the Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. After being attended to for a few minutes by medical staff, she told National Association of Theatre Owners chief John Fithian to go on with his speech on the state of the industry, as staff continued to treat her next to the stage.

Graves was escorted to a side room in the theater’s lobby as Fithin’s speech concluded.

Graves is feeling “okay” and is in good spirits, said an MPAA spokesperson, who added that the medics tended to her out of “an abundance of caution.”

Graves, 77, is widely known throughout the industry for her work¬†assigning the ratings — G through NC-17 — that help parents decide what their children should and shouldn’t see. That often put her in conflict with filmmakers and studios who argued for different ratings.

The Motion Picture Association of America said on Nov. 15 of last year that Graves would retire and be replaced by MPAA lawyer Kelly McMahon.

“I decided it was time, if only because it doesn’t look good to have a granny in charge,” Graves told the New York Times in November. “I can tell you honestly, though, I still love movies. That has never gone away.”

CinemaCon, the annual convention of NATO, began Monday and runs through Thursday.

Brian Welk contributed to this story.

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