Posts tagged Bharati Dubey
Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; October 9, 2010)
Mumbai: Rajnikanth-starrer Endhiran has netted a collection of Rs 117 crore, surpassing the first-week collection of Bollywood’s highest firstweek grosser, Dabangg (Rs 82 crore).
Distributor and trade analyst Suniel Wadhwa said, “The film’s net collection is Rs 60 crore in Tamil Nadu, Rs 30 crore in Andhra Pradesh, Rs 8 crore in Karnataka and Rs 4 crore in Kerala. The Hindi version (Robot) has managed to collect Rs 15 crore. As the numbers suggest, the film has already crossed Dabangg’s two weeks’ net collection in just the first week of its release.’’
Incidentally, the entertainment tax structure and ticket-pricing formula are not uniform in India. “Ticket prices in south India are much lower as compared to other states in the country. This is the reason why boxoffice collection in the south pales as against the collection in northern states. Despite all this, the film’s BO collections prove the film has done remarkably well,’’ Wadhwa said.
Moreover, considering the fact that an additional 7% had to be paid as as entertainment tax to the government for being a dubbed movie, the collections are even more significant, an expert said. According to Wadhwa, the contribution of director Shankar too needs to be factored in . “Shankar is one director who has more brand value than Rajinikanth in AP. His films with Arjun, Prabhudeva and Vikram did wonders in the past. His last movie with Rajini did well at the box office though opinions were divided. Robot is an example of what a director like Shankar and a hero like Rajini can cumulatively deliver. ’’
Endhiran opened in 2,200 screens as compared to 1,400 for Dabangg. An industry source said, “More screens mean more revenue and this too has helped Robot. Also about 92 % of cinema halls are running the film and the collection continue to be rock steady,’’ another analyst said.
The film’s report in the Hindi belt too is quite good. Distributor Sunil Bohra said, `“The collection of the film in places like Jodhpur, Ghaziabad and Meerut is also impressive. The film is doing well both in single screens as well as at multiplexes.’’
Sources insist that though it is too early to speculate, the film has definitely grossed Rs 260 crore which is more than the entire collection of Aamir Khan starrer Ghajini.
The Hindi version of the film too has done a business of nearly Rs 30 crore in the first week. Amod Mehra said, “Robot has broken all the records of a dubbed film. I don’t remember any similar film crossing even the Rs 1 crore mark. In fact, Rajinikant’s last release Sivaji was a disaster at the box office.”
Bharati Dubey, Payal Gwalani & Parvathy Gopalakrishnan | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; August 28, 2010)
Mumbai: Despite all the sound and fury created by the Shiv Sena and the MNS over multiplexes failing to screen Marathi films, the first day, first-show of two films—‘Paradh’ and ‘Navra Awali Baiko Lovely’—failed to garner a response from Mumbaikars. TOI visited many multiplexes across the city on Friday only to find that even matinee and evening shows were running to near empty halls. In some cinema halls, audience count was as low as four, while the maximum attendance was 66.
PVR Juhu, for instance, ran two shows of another film ‘Sa Sasucha’—one at 9 am, the other at 4.30pm—but the morning show was cancelled as not even one ticket had been sold. And by 12.30pm, the cinema was yet to sell a ticket for ‘Baiko Lovely’. A staff member said, “Last week, we had to cancel shows of ‘Tee Ratra’ after running it for 45 minutes due to no occupancy.”
It was a similar scene at Fun Cinemas, Chembur, with the 5.45pm show of ‘Paradh’ selling only 10 tickets. The older film, ‘Aiyka Dajiba’, fared slightly better with a viewership of 30. Cinemax at Andheri had to cancel its 2.30 pm show of ‘Baiko Lovely’.
Film writer Dilip Thakur feels that the Marathi film industry needs to go the Bollywood way when it comes to promotion and marketing. “There is a need to create hype and generate curiosity so that people are willing to spend money and go to multiplexes. Those Marathi films like ‘Natrang’ and ‘Mee Shivaji Raje Bhosale Boltoy’ were well-marketed and raked money at the box office.”
Mahesh Manjrekar, one of the most successful Marathi filmmakers, agreed. “Every film has to be treated like a big blockbuster. Only then will people become curious. It’s worth noting that while the number of Marathi films being churned out has increased considerably—around 100 a year—the quality has suffered.”
Meanwhile, industry experts say producers’ arguments that the show timings were inconvenient do not hold ground, as many popular Hindi movies have seen packed halls even for 9 am shows on a weekday.
There were only 13 people in a hall that has a capacity of 185 at Big Cinema, Ghatkopar, for ‘Paradh’. Sharad Theatre, also in Chembur, did the best business with 66 people lining up to watch the same film. The hall has a capacity of 400. A staffer at Dadar’s Plaza cinema, where ‘Paradh’ was premiered, said: `There is absolutely no curiosity about the film’’
But Ramesh Sippy, who runs Chitra Cinema at Dadar said the film saw a respectable turnout. `We had 35% occupancy for the matinee show. Please don’t judge the fate of a Marathi film on the first day of its release. Marathi filmgoers often wait for the reviews before booking a ticket.’’
Manjrekar added: “A Marathi manoos does not mind watching a Hindi film over a Marathi one as the production quality is better. I feel the biggest threat to Marathi films is not the price of the ticket but Hindi films. The Marathi filmmaker has to learn to make quality films that are on par with their Hindi counterparts.”
Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; August 21, 2010)
Mumbai: The name’s Bond. Ruskin Bond.
The media-shy and reclusive man from the hills will make his first appearance on silver screen in Vishal Bharadwaj’s Saat Khoon Maaf, which is based on Bond’s story Susanna’s Seven Husbands.
An Indian author of British origin, Ruskin Bond’s writing has inspired several filmmakers to translate them into films. His novel The Flight of Pigeons was adapted by Merchant Ivory films to make Shashi Kapoor-starrer Junoon. Bhardwaj himself is adapting Bond’s book for the second time. His critically acclaimed Blue Umbrella was also based on a Ruskin Bond story.
“When my casting director came up to me and said Ruskin Bond would suit the character, I told him that Bond would not agree,’’ said Bhardwaj. “After the script was ready, I sent him a copy. Then when I went to Mussoorie, I asked him about playing a role in the film and he laughed it off. I pestered him for three months before he finally agreed to do the role. He really thought I was joking, while I always thought it would be an honour to have him as part of my film.’’
Bond makes his movie debut opposite the gorgeous Priyanka Chopra. In one scene, he has to give her a peck on the cheek. The director says scene took quite a few retakes, “Because he is very shy.’’ Or maybe not. When Bhardwaj told the rosy-cheeked Bond that he would have to hold Priyanka’s hand in another scene, the writer replied with his trademark charm, “I may not let go of that hand then.’’
Chopra, on her part, is absolutely thrilled to be sharing screen space with the legendary writer. “I got all his books autographed as soon as I met Mr Bond on the sets,’’ Chopra says. “I grew up reading Ruskin Bond and even studied some of his stories as part of my school curriculum. Meeting him, acting in a film based on his story and finally sharing the screen with him is just too good to be true,’’ she adds.
This is not the first time a writer has appeared on screen. Bhisham Shahani, who wrote Tamas, played a vital character in Govind Nihalani’s adaptation of the story into a teleseries. “Though hesitant in the beginning, Sahni fit the part and gave a great performance. Besides, he is actor Balraj Sahni’s brother, so he has the acting gene in the family,’’ says Nihalani, adding that Bond’s debut is “fantastic casting.’’
Even Salman Rushdie has done a cameo in both Bridget Jones’ Diary as well as Then She Found Me. Urdu writer Ismat Chugtai featured in Merchant Ivory’s Junoon and Booker prize winner Arundhati Roy has featured in Massey Sahib, In Which Annie Gives It Those Ones and Electric Moon.
Workers Tear Posters, Stop Screenings
Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; August 15, 2010)
Mumbai: Activists of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) are at it again and this time, their demand was that more Marathi films should be screened at the theatres.
MNS members stormed into several movie halls in the city and in Thane on Saturday, throwing stones and tearing down movie posters. Even as screenings were disrupted at theatres in Kandivli, Dadar and Thane, viewers did not seem to support the cause.“I don’t know why people who have paid to watch a film should be inconvenienced,’’ said a visitor to a Kandivli (E) theatre.“If more and more people go to watch Marathi films at theatres, the number of screenings will automatically go up. Hall owners want to make profits.If they are screening more Hindi and English films than Marathi movies, then it means that there is more demand for Hindi and English films than those in Marathi.’’
Logic and reason, however, fell casualties as MNS workers took to strong-arm tactics. The Shivaji Park police had to rush to Nakshatra Mall in Dadar where the box office were pelted with stones. “We got a call from the theatre management, saying a group of men had thrown stones at the box office. However, by the time our team reached the spot, none of the goons was around. No case has been registered,’’ said senior inspector Suresh Unavne. MNS workers vandalised a theatre at Growel’s Mall in Kandivli (E) where they shouted slogans and tore down Hindi film posters, triggering panic among patrons. In the melee, a plastic counter selling confectionery was damaged.
The party’s general secretary, Pravin Darekar, submitted a letter to the cinema hall management, enquiring why Marathi films were not being screened there despite the state rule. (According to a state government rule, a theatre is supposed to screen 44 shows of a Marathi film in a year.) After a discussion with the management, the MNS workers dispersed. “We are yet to decide if a case can be filed against the MNS men. No one is willing to press charges against them,’’ an official from the Samata Nagar police station said.
MNS functionaries also targeted the multiplex at Eternity Mall in Thane where a group tore down the posters of non-Marathi movies. “No poster of a Marathi movie is ever displayed like that of Hindi or English films,’’ said MNS activist Omkar Mali. “Marathi films are screened only once a day and that too, in a latenight show. All we are asking them is to go by the rule and ensure that there are three or more shows.’’ The Thane police have arrested five persons.
We follow 44-show rule: Halls
Mumbai: The MNS’ “fight for Marathi films’’ seems more about realpolitik and grabbing the eyeballs rather than the actual cause. This because most of the multiplexes claim that they have already completed their state government quota of screening 44 shows of Marathi films in a year, while some others insist that they have even exceeded the number.
Four English, two Hindi and two Marathi films were released this Friday. While Peepli Live has got about 10 to 12 shows in every multiplex, the English movies have got about two shows a day and Marathi films one or two shows a day. A multiplex source said, “We have already exceeded the state quota of 44 shows of Marathi films a year. At present, we have some halls in Thane and Sion where films like Tee Ratra and Aika Daajiba, which were released last week, are being screened.’’
Pointing out the reasons for not screening Marathi films more often, some theatre owners claimed that those movies did not bring business; they said they often had to cancel a show for the lack of audience. A senior Marathi film critic said, “It is not fair to blame theatres and show timings for fewer screenings of Marathi films. If a Hindi movie viewer does not mind attending an early-morning show, why cannot a Marathi filmgoer do the same?”
The screening of Aika Dajiba at Gossip in Bandra had to be cancelled owing to lack of viewers. Managing director of G-7, Manoj Desai, said, “With due respect to Raj Thackeray—I am happy that he is promoting Marathi films—I would like to say that we have no problem screening Marathi films but there is no audience. We will request him to find a solution to this problem of Marathi filmgoers refusing to watch a film at a theatre.” But refuting the allegation, Kishori Shahane, producer of Aika Dajiba, said, “Marathi films don’t get prime slots. I am sure viewers would come if the timings were more suitable.”
Ameya Khopkar, president of the MNS cine wing, told TOI, “We will continue with the agitation till the multiplexes start slotting proper shows for Marathi films. Peepli Live gets 400 shows and Marathi films only 26. It is not fair on Marathi cinegoers who want to watch films but halls are just not interested in screening them.’’
Bharati Dubey | TNN (BOMBAY TIMES; July 11, 2010)
Mumbai: Official sources from Aamir Khan Productions have denied any possibility of letting political parties use a song from the coming film, Peepli Live.
“It will not lend itself to political use. The song in question is part of the story of the film, which is a humorous take on urban and rural divide that exists in India; inflation is a general issue,’’ a spokesperson for the production house said on Saturday. “Aamir Khan Productions also maintains a strictly apolitical stand. There is no question of allowing the song to be used for political campaigns.’’
Opposition parties, mainly the NDA, had contacted Aamir Khan Productions, asking them for the permission to use the song, Mehngai Dayan—the lyrics are about how inflation is eating into the happiness of people—for election campaigns in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The song, in its rural style, complains about the hike in petrol and diesel prices.
The Congress had gone filmy the similar way last year, when it adopted the Oscar-winning Jai ho as its anthem before the general elections. However, the party has now called the Oppostion’s bid to procure the Peepli Live song as a political gimmick. Rajiv Shukla of the Congress said, “The BJP wants to take political advantage of everything, including films.’’
Jai Ho was not the first time that Bollywood was used by political parties. Chak De was used by the Congress unit of Gujarat in 2007 before the state election there. Lyricist Sameer said, “I had written a parody of the song, Chor Bazari from Love Aaj Kal for chief minister Ashok Chavan for his election campaign. Most people connect with films and music. That is perhaps why political parties try to rope in artistes and songs.’’
The lyricist recalls how his father, Anjaan’s song from Don, Khaike Paan Banaraswala, was used by the Congress to promote none other than Amitabh Bachchan during the 1984 election campaign in Allahabad.
THE TIMES OF INDIA (June 6, 2010)
Forty-eight hours ago, “Raajneeti”, the film, opened to good reviews, fuelling talk that Katrina Kaif was here to stay as Bollywood’s reigning diva. Not so, says the actress, the real star is the movie, not the actor. She talks marriage, Salman Khan and her “foreign” accent with Bharati Dubey. Excerpts:
“Raajneeti” has given ballast to your status as Bollywood’s Queen Bee, hasn’t it?
• It is a very kind sentiment. But a lot of work has gone into the making of “Raajneeti”. I worked on getting the accent right for 25 days during the dubbing of the film. A lot of tears, heated discussions went into it till we finally got it right. It is too early to say if the film is a success but there are positive reactions. Besides, I also feel the trend is changing. Today it is the film which is the star.
Many doubts were expressed when you accepted the role.
• That’s one-hundred per cent true! My accent was perennially discussed. But there was one good outcome — everybody agreed that my accent blended well in the movie. My victory was about overcoming the language hurdle.
“Raajneeti” is said to be inspired by the Mahabharata. Were you aware that another film, “Kalyug”, was on the same lines, with Rekha playing Draupadi’s role?
• Yes, just a week before the release of “Raajneeti”, a friend told me that the film reminded her of “Kalyug”. It is a good thing that I didn’t see the film, otherwise I would’ve got influenced by it. But now I will definitely watch it.
With “Raajneeti” you seem to have shed the “NRI girl” tag. What roles do you intend to take up now?
• I have been getting wonderful offers in the last two years. I’ve liked some roles, but was not confident if they would work at the box office. Yes, I do take into consideration the commercial viability of a film; that’s important for me. After “Raajneeti”, I don’t plan to do something radically different. I will take up roles that I feel passionate about, but will also do some fun films like “Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani”. I am still young and would like to do films that suit my age as well.
How do you react when people say that you are a foreigner?
• I take offence! Just because I have an accent does not mean that. Lakshmi Mittal resides in London and has an accent; that doesn’t mean that you will take his citizenship away from him. I am not an alien. I don’t mind being called an angel as there’s no parentage involved, but certainly not a foreigner or an outsider.
Do you recall the resistance you faced when you entered the industry?
• Yes, there was resistance, and rightly so as it helped me learn to perform in front of the camera, work with my language handicap, etc. But a lot of people also had faith in me and gave me a chance. But my career is not entirely made of chance. I was very attentive on the sets and learnt a lot. If people give you an opportunity, you have to deliver too. I used to dissect my work in every film and improve upon it in the next.
What was Salman Khan’s contribution to your career?
• Undoubtedly, it’s been immense. There is no shame or secret about it. It is in Salman’s nature to help people he believes in. He had confidence and belief in me, but he always stressed hard work and dedication. His advice and guidance have been invaluable as at that time I had no films.
You are constantly compared to Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Kareena Kapoor, especially when you replace them in films or ads.
• Ash is an icon and has achieved huge success. The point I am trying to make is that one has to keep moving on in life. For instance, I don’t intend to get stuck in the “Ajab” kind of role, wearing hair bands forever. Ash too has always moved ahead and is now taking a different journey. I really don’t like the word replacement. Even I have parted ways from some brands — may be they are looking for something different; may be I want to do something different. As for Kareena, she has been in the industry longer than me and has done more films. We share the same manager, and she has been very supportive. It’s very kind of her.
You represent the Barbie doll brand in India. What do you think of a brand creating false notions of beauty?
• I understand people’s concerns, but Barbie is an iconic brand. Four out of five kids in India, who come to me for autographs, wear a Barbie T-shirt or shoes. They are part of my audience, and I don’t see anything wrong in cementing that association further through Barbie.
You choose to avoid discussing your relationships.
• Life is transient. The happiness and contentment I get by doing what is right for me outweighs the stuff that appears in the newspapers about me. It does not sit well with me to discuss my personal life — if and when the time comes, I will speak, and that time is not now. I have a strong sense of responsibility when it comes to my public image, but I will not discuss or explain things to people at the cost of my personal life.
There was some talk about your sister joining films and your mother coming to stay with you in Mumbai?
• My mom lives in Chennai as she runs an orphanage there, but I meet her often. My sister is completing her studies. It’s for her to decide what she wants to do in life.
Do you plan to get married by 2012?
• I did say that I will get married in 2012 and it was not for effect, but now I don’t know…
Will you be able to give up cinema for marriage?
• Cinema, for me, is a passion, not an addiction. But I am sure that when I hit the right note with the person I love, I will make the transition without any hitch.
Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; June 4, 2010)
After being sucked unwittingly into the Tamil-Sinhala conflict, the IIFA Awards in Colombo saw the seeds of another clash being sown on its opening day. Salman Khan, who’s been the face of this year’s event, criticised superstar Amitabh Bachchan for giving the awards a miss despite being the brand ambassador.
“Mr Bachchan is the brand ambassador of the event, he should have been present here. Besides, we are doing a lot for the Sri Lankan Tamilians, building houses for them and rehabilitating them,’’ Salman said after lending a hand to construction of houses by an NGO on the outskirts of Colombo on Thursday.
The Bachchan clan has skipped the event despite being closely identified with it since its inception. Although none of them has commented, industry insiders pointed to the fact that the Abhishek and Aishwarya-starrer Raavan, due for release soon, has been directed by Mani Ratnam, who has supported the south Indian film industry’s call to boycott the IIFA Awards.
Though Bollywood tried to put up a facade of being united in the face of pressure from the south Indian industry by taking a huge contingent to Sri Lanka, the names of those who are missing are significant. Ranbir Kapoor, Shah Rukh Khan, Boney Kapoor, Yash Chopra and Karan Johar are some of the bigwigs who will not be participating. Shah Rukh, who was scheduled to perform at the event, has tweeted his excuse: a lot of pending work.
Industry watchers pointed out an interesting trend from the list—most of those staying away have new releases lined up. For instance, Ranbir Kapoor has Raajneeti releasing this Friday. “I am busy with the promotion of my film, so will not be attending the IIFA,” he said. In fact, the entire teams of Raavan, Raajneeti, I hate Luv Storys, Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai will not be present at the awards function.
Though director Boney Kapoor is staying away, his film Milenge Milenge is among those that could be targeted down south. Kareena Kapoor, who stars in it, is participating. So is Sanjay Dutt and Bipasha, who are in Rahul Dholakia’s Lamhaa. Anant Mahadevan’s Red Alert features Suniel Shetty, who is participating in a charity cricket match for Tamil kids, but will apparently keep off the awards function.
Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; May 30, 2010)
Mumbai: Missed Kites? Don’t worry. Hrithik and Barbara will soon burn up the small screen in the TV premier of the film.
The satellite rights for Kites were sold to an entertainment channel for Rs 20 crore even before the movie released. It’s probably the first time that a big ticket film will be premiered on television within a month of its release in cinema halls. Kites will be telecast in early June. Confirms Reliance Big Pictures CEO Sanjeev Lamba, “We have sold the satellite rights of Kites and will soon decide the telecast date. However, we cannot confirm or deny the selling price of the film.’’
Going by the prices of films’ satellite rights, they are the biggest eyeball-grabber on TV too. Bollywood blockbuster 3 Idiots has proved to be a master blaster on telly as well. Rights of the movie were sold for Rs 38 crore—the highest for any film in the history of Hindi cinema. Sajid Nadiadwala’s Housefull has been sold to TV for Rs 16 crore. “About 8-10% of the TRP for channels comes from films, so most of them are on a buying spree,’’ says a trade source. The last film to premier on TV was Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani, which was screened after three months of its release.
This resurrection of the satellite business has brought relief to the recession-affected industry, though some argue that this is a temporary spurt caused by aggressive buying by a few players.
Lamba believes all the signs are positive. “There are about six-seven channels buying TV rights of films. Besides, there is a significant growth in DTH and cable households. Also, the advertising market has recovered and big ticket films have always been viable for broadcasters,’’ he says.
Jayantilal Gada, who is incharge of acquisition for Zee Network, has just the opposite view. “These prices are not real and will crash soon,’’ he says. “That is the reason we are not doing any buying. We will start buying once we begin to get the right price.’’
A trade source countered Gada, saying, “Most films have already been sold, there’s nothing left for anyone to buy.’’
With business in multiplexes being restricted to two weeks, the holdback period for other rights of films have been shrinking. Time was when satellite rights of films were sold six months after their release. Now, most satellite rights deals are cut before the film is released. Farah Khan’s Tees Maar Khan has sold for 18 crore. Prakash Jha’s Raajneeti and Hrithik-Aishwarya starrer Guzaarish have already been lapped up by TV channels for Rs 20 crore. Imran-Sonam romance I Hate Luv Storys has made Rs 12 crore in satellite rights.
How does pre-selling work? “We get to see part of the film and sit down with the producers before we buy it,’’ explains Sameer Rao, GM of Star Gold. “We buy a film only after evaluation.’’
Industry insiders insist that there is a huge risk involved in buying films before release. “Had the channel bought the rights of Kites after release, I don’t think the producers would’ve got the price they have made on it,’’ says a source. Siddharth Roy Kapur, CEO of UTV Motion pictures, feels the deal can go either way.
Satellite TV rates
3 Idiots: Rs 38 crore
Kites: Rs 20 crore
Guzaarish: Rs 20 crore
Raajneeti: Rs 20 crore
Tees Maar Khan: Rs 18 crore
Housefull: Rs 16 crore
Film Overcomes Political Hurdle
Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; May 27, 2010)
Mumbai: The Film Certification Appellate Tribunal in Delhi has overruled the decision of the Censor Board of Film Certification revising committee and has given a U/A certificate to Prakash Jha’s Raajneeti. The film was cleared on Wednesday, albeit with a few cuts.
A film usually takes a couple of days to get the censor clearance, but Jha’s Rajneeti had to wait for a week. Film industry insiders said that Jha should consider himself lucky that the tribunal cleared his film in two days and insisted that he would not have had to go through the wait had the film been screened for the Congress.
Three persons with Congress affiliation were flown from New Delhi to Mumbai for the revising committee screening where a U/A certificate was refused. Congress media coordinator Tom Vadakkan is believed to be part of the revising committee and Pankaj Sharma, editor of Sandesh (a Congress mouthpiece), confirmed that he was in Mumbai for the screening.
“We had told them to cut a few scenes and come back to us, but they preferred to go to the tribunal,’’ Sharma said.
Jha denied this.“They didn’t ask us to come back. We kept begging them, asking what could be done for the film to get a U/A certificate, and they told us to come back with the revised version,” he said. “The changes they were asking for would have meant changing the entire film, which was not possible. I knew nothing would help the film, so I decided to move the tribunal. I am thankful that the tribunal cleared Rajneeti with minimal cuts.’’
Jha has reduced the bedroom scene between Arjun Rampal and Katrina Kaif by 50%, muted a few swear words and replaced vidhwa with the word bitiya.
Insiders said the top Congress brass was not really concerned about the contents and the film-maker, too, has vehemently denied any resemblance to the Gandhi family. However, party minions were trying to harass Jha and continued to demand a screening of the film before its release.
They added that feelers were sent to the director to screen the film for some politicians but were told there was nothing in the film that involved any Congress leader and there was no need to show the film to anyone; this might have upset some of the middle-level party members.
But there are a few problems that Jha needs to sort out. Producer-actor Kamal Khan has sent a legal notice to Jha stating that the title of the film belongs to him. Naseem Khan, who runs an NGO, has filed a case stating Kaif ’s character resembles Sonia Gandhi.
Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; May 21, 2010)
Mumbai: The producers of the film Raajneeti may move the appellate tribunal of the censor board and are looking at other options as they are not happy with the ‘Adult’ certificate the film has got.
The film was cleared by the revising committee of the censor board on Thursday with an ‘A’ certificate with a few changes in some dialogues. The examining committee of the board had referred the film to the board’s revising committee on Wednesday as members were divided over the type of certificate to be issued.
“Some members wanted to give an ‘A’ certificate without cuts while some wanted to give it a ‘U/A’ with cuts,’’ an insider said. “So it was decided that the film be referred to the revising committee for a final decision,’’ he added.
The revising committee, consisting of six members, saw the film on Thursday and issued the film an ‘A’ certificate with some changes in the dialogue. A member said, “We have asked them to delete the words, ‘Vidhwa vote le jayegi’. There is a lot of violence and foul language in the film and intimate scenes between Ranbir Kapoor and Sarah Thompson, Katrina and Arjun Rampal. So we had to issue an ‘A’ certificate.’’
When asked if the producers were happy with the certificate, the member said, “They asked what they should do for the film to get a ‘U/A’ certificate. But we had to tell them the film would have to be truncated a lot and go with major changes if they wanted a ‘U/A’ certificate. They didn’t seem too happy about that.’’
There are speculations that the film is inspired by the life of Congress leader Sonia Gandhi. But members from both the examining committee and the revising committee of the board denied this, saying the film did not seem to have anything to do with the Gandhi family; instead, it seemed like a “modern Mahabharata’’.
The Congress has not openly raised objections to the film but media reports have speculated that Katrina Kaif ’s character has been inspired by Sonia Gandhi.
The director of the film, Prakash Jha, has already invited the Gandhi family to watch the film. The producers have also denied that they are under pressure from the Congress to screen the film for them.