Actor Abhishek Bachchan today said he did not mind the omission of certain scenes in Manmarziyaan to “placate” the Sikh community as it doesn’t harm the film’s larger idea.
Manmarziyaan producers Eros and Anand L Rai’s Collour Yellow Productions a few days ago approached the Censor Board for deletion of three scenes in the film – two sequences showing Taapsee Pannu and Abhishek Bachchan smoking, respectively, and one scene in a Gurudwara where Taapsee’s character Rumi is thinking about her ex-lover while getting married to Abhishek’s Robbie.
The makers’ request came after the Sikh community raised an objection to the above-mentioned scenes. Kashyap, who was apparently not informed about the exchange between the makers and censor board, took to Twitter to slam Eros’ chairperson Kishore Lulla.
“Congratulations. Here by all problems of Punjab are solved and Sikh youth have been saved. Happy to be back in LaLa land again. Next time you are threatened by a film please call Kishore Lulla directly on Eros knows how to solve matters in minutes,” Kashyap had tweeted. Taapsee, meanwhile, has been shutting down trolls on Twitter speaking against the deleted scenes.
Before my tweet is taken down -Congratulations . Here by all problems of Punjab are solved and Sikh youth have been saved . Happy to be back in LaLa land again. Next time you are threatened by a film please call Kishore Lulla directly on Eros knows how to solve matters in minutes pic.twitter.com/4yqU3T9utK
— Anurag Kashyap (@anuragkashyap72) September 20, 2018
My religion never taught me to censor someone’s feelings. I don’t know who gave these bunch of self proclaimed religion saviours the authority to decide what a woman can think and what not. Did u ? And if not will u stay quiet when they tell u what to think n what not ! I won’t ! pic.twitter.com/7plIgpEUi4
— taapsee pannu (@taapsee) September 21, 2018
Today, during a Q&A session at the Jagran Cinema Summit, Abhishek was asked about his reaction to the incident, to which the actor said he feels the pain of exhibitors who he believes would be at a loss if people don’t go to cinema halls to watch Manmarziyaan because of certain portions in it.
“Each individual is allowed to react the way they have and they want to. It’s their personal opinion. For me, it’s not a big deal. My film isn’t about anyone smoking. I have no problem cutting that out if someone has taken objection to it. The intention of the makers is not to hurt anyone or to upset any community or ruffle any feathers. We just wanted to make a nice love story and that’s what the film is about. If by cutting out one or two shots, it’s going to placate someone and make them feel better, I’ve no problem doing that.
“If me cutting out three shots which is not impacting my narrative makes you happy, by all means. My intention is not to hurt you or court a controversy. I’m very clear of these things. If they are removed, I’m fine,” the actor said.
When the summit’s moderator Mayank Shekhar followed up with a question whether the Manmarziyaan producers’ decision would set a wrong precedent for future films, Abhishek said one needs to look at every film separately and in entirety.
“It depends on what the issue is. I’m looking at it in its entirety. Why and who is objecting, what’s the purpose behind the objection. If that’s genuine, look into it genuinely and address it. You need to ask who’s the loser here? In the situation like we are in right now, it’s the exhibitors. I, as an actor, have done my job and have been paid. If there is an objection or a protest, a cinema hall might get vandalised, shows of the exhibitors might get cancelled and that person is going to lose money. If you say it’s a bad precedent, please underwrite all the losers that people down the chain are going to face. I’ll stand by you.
“That’s my industry as well and I’ve got to think about that as well. Those one or two shots aren’t going to change the story, so take it out. If it’s changing the narrative or the reason why I’m making the film, then no. Like in Udta Punjab. But here, I’m not going to sit on my ego for three basic shots, which might affect the exhibitors. It’s my industry as well,” he concluded.