Superstar Salman Khan is no stranger to controversies and the actor believes rows such as around “Padmavati” affect the movie business adversely. The 52-year-old star today said a film suffers a lot in an unfriendly environment as people avoid theatres, fearing violence. “I am not sure if there is any benefit (out of this) but it definitely leads to loss. There is loss, a lot of loss, I have seen it for myself. People are scared to go to the theatres. Business goes down 100 per cent. “Even if the film is in news, no one goes to theatres out of fear. Theatre owners are also scared because they don’t want violence and stone-pelting outside their theatres. People do panic,” Salman said when asked about protest around the film. The actor was in conversation with senior journalist Shekhar Gupta at the HT Leadership Summit here.
Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s period drama is embroiled in a controversy with various Rajput groups and political leaders accusing the director of distorting history. The Deepika Padukone-Shahid Kapoor-Ranveer Singh starrer’s release date has been deferred from December 1 till further notice by the makers. Salman has worked with Bhansali in three films – “Khamoshi: The Musical”, “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam” and “Saawariya”. When Gupta asked Salman if the director had a track record of hurting sentiments, the actor, never the one to give a straight answer to a question, quipped that Bhansali had offended him. “I don’t know about others but he definitely offended me. I gave him two hits — “Khamoshi” and “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam” and he took Shah Rukh in the next one (Devdas),” he joked.
On a more serious note, the actor said although one must respect people’s sentiments, calling for a ban on a film without even watching it was unfair. He said the only decision that would matter will come from either the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) or the Supreme Court. “I don’t think it is fair to hurt anyone’s sentiments. It is also not fair to comment on a film without seeing it. The censor board will give its certificate and we will go by it.
“It (the film) has been talked about so much that it is no longer clear what is right or what is wrong. The censor board or the Supreme Court will take a decision and everyone should respect that.” Incidentally, Bhansali and CBFC chief Prasoon Joshi met a parliamentary panel on IT today to discuss the problems and issues surrounding the film.