Actor Jim Sarbh has landed in a controversy after a purported video emerged online where the Padmaavat star is seen cracking a rape joke and Kangana Ranaut laughing and clapping on it. The short clip was apparently shot during a party the two actors attended on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival. The 30-year-old actor’s joke evoked laughter from other attendees, including Kangana who is seen clapping in response. The two actors were at Cannes as brand ambassadors of a liquor brand.
In the video that surfaced late on Thursday, Jim is seen acting some line in a private environment at an after-party event at the 71st Cannes Film Festival. Many users on Twitter shared the viral video and lashed out at the two actors for their “insensitivity towards sexual violence.”
Jim said in a statement to IANS: “It is unfortunate that my comments were taken out of context. I do not now nor have I ever condoned any form of sexual violence. This (video) has been picked out of context without a prelude where I am actually enacting parts of a play which is a dark satire.”
“The piece I was seen delivering in the video is about a priest blowing a very casual question completely out of proportion, condemning alcohol, prostitutes and rape all simultaneously. I personally do not find it to be about a desire to rape, or to inflict sexual violence upon another, but a subversive and comedic response to an extremely volatile sentence.”
After the backlash, Sarbh issued a statement claiming that his comments were “taken out of context”. “I understand the environment we live in just now: rape is a deadly serious issue and I treat it as such…,” he said.
“I personally do not find it to be about a desire to rape, or to inflict sexual violence upon another. I did not intend to hurt anybody, and I certainly do not consider actual sexual or physical violence funny,” he added.
(With inputs from IANS and PTI)