Bollywood actor Anupam Kher, who is playing former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh in the upcoming film The Accidental Prime Minister, on Friday addressed the issues with regard to the film at a press conference.
The film has been drawing flak from the opposition party as it seemingly portrays Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi in a negative light. The youth wing of the Maharashtra Youth Congress has even asked for a special screening of the film prior its official release.
When asked about the special screening, Anupam said, “Why should I screen it for anyone? We have shown it to the CBFC. That’s enough. If Dr Manmohan Singh asks us, we will show him for sure.”
Later, when Anupam Kher was informed that Congress has dismissed reports that the Madhya Pradesh government is mulling a ban on The Accidental Prime Minister, the actor said, “It is good that the Congress has taken a stand. They should encourage this film. Every party should encourage such films. Dr Singh has been one of the best Prime Ministers of our times.”
The former FTII chairman also said that they have not taken undue cinematic liberties in the film and said, “The book is written by Sanjaya Baru. He was in the PMO. If anybody had issues with the film, they should have spoken about it then. Our film is totally based on the book. We have not fictionalised it.”
Speaking about the controversy that followed the trailer release, Anupam Kher said that the film should be perceived as a work of art. “When Ben Kingsley played Gandhi, he got an Oscar. Other actors who have played significant political figures, they have received appreciation. Then why is my work not seen as art?” asked Anupam.
“We talk about freedom of expression, but when we practice our right, people try to curb it,” the actor added.
Anupam Kher also said that he knew people would have issues with his portrayal and the subject but he couldn’t resist giving his nod to the project.
“We released the trailer on Thursday. I had said it then itself that when I was offered this film, I didn’t want to do it. That is because I knew there will be controversies. But the actor in me wanted to do it,” Anupam said.