German court overturns cannibal film ban

Martin Weisz's 'Rohtenburg' cleared for local viewing

COLOGNE, Germany -- A film loosely based on the life of infamous German cannibal Armin Meiwes has been cleared for release in Germany after a four-year legal battle.

Martin Weisz's "Rohtenburg" (Grimm Love), starring Keri Russell and Thomas Kretschmann, was a strong festival player, winning multiple awards at fantasy fests in Spain, Sweden, Luxembourg and South Korea. But German courts initially blocked its local release after Meiwes filed a suit claiming the film violated his rights.

The German Federal Court of Justice overturned that ruling Tuesday, saying that, in this case, artistic freedom trumps Meiwes' personal rights. It is expected that Senator Film, which co-produced "Rothenburg" with Marco Weber's Atlantic Streamline, will release the film in Germany.

Meiwes is serving a life sentence for killing and eating a man who answered a cannibalistic lonely hearts ad Meiwes put online.