The Kerala Film Producers Association on Thursday banned actor Shane Nigam from all their movies on charges of “indiscipline”. It also alleged that drug abuse was rampant among young artistes in the Malayalam film industry, and that was a reason for indiscipline.
The ban came amid a controversy over Nigam (24) changing his hairstyle while production work of Veyil was going on. Upset with his makeover during the shooting, producer Joby George had locked horns with Nigam, who alleged that the producer had threatened to kill him.
Reacting to the ban, Shane Nigam said he was not heard by the association, and there was a denial of natural justice.
“The producers had assured that the issue would be settled and there was no indication of any disciplinary action,” he said. The actor added that he would not accept the ban and would continue to act in films as that is his profession.
Addressing the media in Kochi, Kerala Film Producers Association president Rajaputhra Renjith and other office-bearers said they had decided to abandon two film projects — Veyil and Qurubani — as they had suffered loss of Rs 6 crore due to Shane Nigam. Nigam would not be allowed to act in films until he compensates for the loss, Renjith said.
“Appearance is very important in the film. By trimming the hair, he (Nigam) insulted the producer who had invested crores in the industry. Besides, Nigam demanded more money from the producer of the film Ullasam to finish the dubbing. The contract with the producer was for Rs 25 lakh, but he demanded another Rs 20 lakh for dubbing. No other artiste behaved in such a manner,” he said.
Association leaders said that indiscipline was widespread among young actors. “The ban on Nigam is a warning to all. Everyone is speaking about the abuse of drugs at shooting locations. Police should inspect the locations as well as caravans of actors. Drug abuse is one of the reasons for indiscipline,” they said.
Ranjith said that a section of new-generation actors were using drugs. The association will extend all support for a probe in this regard, he said. “Like Nigam, there are other young actors who are reluctant to turn up for shooting on time. Many are not behaving level-headed,” he added.
In 2015, Shine Tom Chacko, a young actor, was arrested from a hotel on charges of possessing cocaine. Police nabbed Chacko and his friends during a party in Kochi.
Shane Nigam, the son of late film actor and mimicry artiste Kalabhavan Abi, made his silver screen debut as a child actor in 2010. He had the lead role in Shaji N Karun’s 2018 film Oolu. He also had roles in Kammatipaadam and Kumbalangi Nights.