Mumbai: Filmmaker Rahul Rawail has said the Sanjay Leela Bhansali-directed “Padmavati’ should not be shunned as it would amount to curtailment of creativity.
“I abhor what is being done to ‘Padmavati’. Sanjay Leela Bhansali is a sensible and fabulous filmmaker, he is not going to change history or turn it around. The reaction are more political. But ‘Padmavati’ has no reason to be shunned like this, let CBFC see the film,” Rawail said.
Various Rajput groups and political leaders have accused Bhansali of distorting history in the movie by using a romantic dream sequence between Rajput queen Padmini and Alauddin Khilji, a claim repeatedly denied by the filmmaker.
“Politics is not coming in way of filmmaking. You cannot accuse Bhansali of having changed history, he is a sensible director, why will he do it? In ‘Mughal-E-Azam’, Anarkali was a fictitious character, so will you ban this film? The protest is stupid.
“Creativity should not be curtailed in situation of ‘Padmavati’, let CBFC see the film and then decision should be made. Once the film is censored why should someone else come in between?,” he said.
Rawail, who replaced Sujoy Ghosh as the jury head of the Indian Panorama section of the recently concluded International Film Festival of India (IFFI), said the makers of Malayalam film “S Durga” deliberatively created a controversy at the festival.
Ghosh had resigned, after the film along with Marathi film “Nude”, were dropped from the final IFFI list by the Information and Broadcasting ministry.
Rawail accused “S Durga” director Sanal Kumar Sasidharan of resorting to controversies to promote his film.
“He was only looking to create publicity and that was from day one. The festival says it will accept uncensored films but they will have to get it cleared by a central committee, which gives you clearance or doesn’t give you clearance.
“So when it came up in MAMI it was not given clearance.
But he went to the censor (board) by changing the title. He got the Censor certificate as ‘S Durga’, we wondered why it was called ‘S Durga’ from ‘Sexy Durga’. It has now become a fashion that you put everything against the ministry,” he said.
“The certificate says ‘S Durga’ but the title says S three white square block and then Durga, what does this mean.
It is complete violation of law, what comes on the certificate, is the title of the film,” he added.
The Panorama jury had viewed the censored version of film after the director approached the Kerala High Court, which ordered that the film be screened at the festival.
“When he got an order from the court, saying the jury has to view it and give an order. So accordingly we viewed it and give the order to the ministry as we are suppose to.
“In the morning we heard CBFC has taken cognisance of changing the title. They had written letter to the producer stating the changing of the title and its misinterpretation.
The application (for the censor) and title should be same,” Rawail said.
Rawail also said that Sanal sent him threatening mails but he chose to stay silent as the whole issue was sub-judice.
He further said he fails to understand how the news of “Nude” being the opening film at the festival and the jury’s vote for “S Durga” came out in media.
“I am still wondering how the news came, I guess there was a rat in the jury, who has feeding him with all the information. I do not want to elaborate anything more on that,” he added.