National Award winning filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar has taken a strong stand against any special screenings of his Emergency-based film Indu Sarkar. Saying he was under a lot of pressure from political parties, Bhandarkar appealed to those who believed in the freedom of expression in cinema to come together and protest attacks on filmmakers.
Earlier, Silverscreen had reported that Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam wanted Bhandarkar to have a special screening of Indu Sarkar for him.
The period-drama has been under fire from certain sections of the Congress as it revolves around the controversial Emergency period in India from 1975-84. Indu Sarkar stars Kirti Kulhari, Neil Nitin Mukesh, and Anupam Kher in leading roles. It has been bankrolled by Bharat Shah and Bhandarkar himself.
Bhandarkar said he would not screen the film for anyone, and that it wasn’t a documentary but a work of fiction. According to a Hindustan Times report, he said, “I will not show Indu Sarkar to anybody. I have received letters from Sanjay Nirupam, Jagdish Tytler and and Priya Singh Paul who claims to be Sanjay Gandhi’s daughter. I am under a lot pressure. People are threatening me on social media platforms, saying that they will blacken my face. This is absolutely wrong.”
He also said he did not understand the need for special screenings, as anyone could watch it once the Censor Board cleared it with appropriate certification.
Bhandarkar also appealed to other filmmakers and the public to support him, as he said the issue reeked of the “suppression of freedom of speech and expression.”
He said, “My only appeal is that those who say that their should be freedom of expression in cinema, should come together, be it from any industry, because today it is happening with me, and tomorrow it will happen with someone else. There is no end to it. When there were issues during Anurag Kashayap’s Udta Punjab, I supported him. During Karan Johar’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, I was there. When there was an attack on Bhansali, I supported him and revolted that attacks on the filmmakers should not happen. And today they are posting on Twitter against me. This is totally wrong.”
He said the film’s plot was about a husband and wife who have contradictory views about the Emergency. He said, “It’s about the clash of points of view and the backdrop of the movie is the Emergency. My film is an emotional journey. I am concentrating on that thing and they are simply bullying a filmmaker by asking him to change something or the other.”
Indu Sarkar is slated for a July 28 release.
Pic: Bollywood Tabloid