Producer will screen ‘Padmavati’ to protesters after CBFC certification


Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s ‘Padmavati’ has been caught up in one controversy after another from the start. As the release date looms nearer, producer Ajiy Andhare says they will be happy to show the film to anyone who is against it after the Central Board of Certification (CBFC) has certified it.

Andhare, who is the Chief Operating Officer at Viacom18 Motion Pictures, said in an interview with IANS that he is happy to dispel any doubts around the film once the certification has been obtained. “We are screening the film to CBFC as per established procedure and convention followed in the industry. Once a censor certificate is obtained, we do not have any reservations with screening the film to quell any doubts that are being cast on the film, although such practice is without a precedent.”

Hindu groups and political groups like the BJP have been against the film being made and have accused Bhansali for misrepresenting the history and portrayal of Queen Padmavati. However, Andhare has complete confidence there will be, “appropriate representation from the necessary quarters, historians included. We have no reservations on that count. We trust the CBFC’s judgement.”

Asked when the film will receive the certification, Andhare said, “We are looking at CBFC to do it soonest, to facilitate the planed release on 1 December.”

Following the rumours that there is a romantic dream sequence between Queen Padmavati and invader Alauddin Khilji, something which Bhansali has dismissed, Andhare maintains that the film will showcase Queen Padmavati in a positive light. “We have already clarified that all anxieties about the alleged depiction are unfounded. Sanjay has personally assured in a video that the film celebrates the Queen and Rajput valour, dignity and traditions. Contrary to perception, the film celebrates the classic legend of Padmavati and no creative liberty of the kind alleged has been taken.”

There has also been talks that distributors in Rajasthan are a bit wary about showcasing the film, though Andhare disagrees. “All our distributors are with us. There is nothing in the film that should cause any worry. It’s a film Rajasthan will be proud to watch once it gets smooth release.”

Andhare further adds that he hopes for a “wide release”. “We have full faith in CBFC and its chairman (Prasoon Joshi) and are optimistic that we will be able to release the film on time and it will be supported and loved widely by the people resulting in strong business. We have made the film with utmost sincerity and integrity.”

Joshi also recently shared that the CBFC fully respect Bhansali “as an individual and artist”.

‘Padmavati’ is slated to release on the 1st December, which stars Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh in lead roles.


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