Amid Karni Sena’s anti-Padmavati stance, a look at historical films that weren’t censored for inaccuracy-Entertainment News, Firstpost
There have been objections to historical inaccuracies in Hindi films in the past. But opposition to Padmavati is unprecedented.
Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it. This statement is even more relevant in the case of the protests against the period drama of Sanjay Leela Bhansali Padmavati.
Protesters across the country, led by Shri Rajput Karni Sena, opposed the “distortion of historical facts” and “hijacking of the Rajput clan” without even watching the film. Opposition has escalated to such an extent that it has reportedly postponed the film’s release indefinitely from December 1, 2017, although the directors claimed it was “voluntarily postponed.”
As history has become the central point of this debate, First post decided to revisit the history of Hindi cinema – historical films over the years that have seen a smoother release.
If there is a parallel that can be drawn with the Padmavati controversy, it is the romance of Ashutosh Gowariker of the period 2008. The reservations were, again, on the representation of the central female character. Members of the Rajput community argued that Jodha Bai was not Akbar’s wife (as shown in the film). On the contrary, she was one of the wives of his son Jahangir.
Gowariker used a disclaimer who claimed that the film makes no specific claims about Akbar’s life. The filmmaker insisted that the protesters watch the film first before speaking up against him. Similar to Padmavati, the film has been banned in four states. But after Gowariker moved to the Supreme Court, the film was released in all states except Rajasthan, where Karni Sena enjoys a strong grip.
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Hrithik Roshan in a photo by Jodhaa Akbar
Another period drama that chronicled Akbar was this 1960 K Asif classic. Historians have pointed out many inaccuracies in the film, including the romance between Salim and Anarkali and even serious stuff like inconsistencies in production design and choreography. However, the disagreement was limited to academic discourse and was never manifested in the streets.
Likewise, another semi-fictional account of Mughal history, Akbar Khan Taj Mahal: an eternal love story, enjoyed a hassle-free release despite being unable to complete the box office test.
This film by Salman Khan also succeeded in provoking the ire of Karni Sena. Members of the outfit vandalized movie theaters in Jaipur after the film’s release due to a dialogue voiced by Salman’s main character that implied the Rajputs were traitors. However, the film continued to be screened in all theaters with increased security. On the other hand, Karni Sena vandalized a theater in Kota where the trailer of Padmavati was projected.
Mangal Pandey: The Ascension
Aamir Khan’s film did not interest Karni Sena but encountered a lot of resistance in Uttar Pradesh, especially among freedom fighters. birthplace of Ballia. The film did not come out there amid protests against Pandey’s slander as the film showed him visiting a courtesan, played by Rani Mukerji. The protest, in this case, was limited in both scale and portions of the film, unlike Pan-Indian calls for a blanket ban on Padmavati.
Lagaan and Bose: the forgotten hero
Other films set in the modern era that have enjoyed peaceful release, and even recognition by the Union government, are Gowariker’s Aamir Khan 2001. Lagaan and the film by Shyam Benegal in 2004 Bose: the forgotten hero. While the former was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars, the latter received a National Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration at UPA I.
Asoka and Mohenjo Daro
Both of these films made it clear from the start, with elaborate disclaimers, that they had no trucks with the story. Asoka denied that it was an accurate account of the life of the ruler and stated that he “is only trying to follow the path of Asoka”. Likewise, Gowariker admitted that he let his creativity run wild in Mohenjo Daro due to the paucity of established facts about the Harappan era and also argued that his film should not be included in the academic discourse on the subject.
The 2001 National Award winning film by Shyam Benengal Zubeidaa had strong historical roots but its accuracy came from the lineage of its writer Khalid Mohammed. He was the son of Zubeida Begum who married Hanwant Singh from Jodhpur. In the film, Karisma Kapoor and Manoj Bajpai played Zubeda and Hanwant Singh.
Bhansali is no stranger to claims of historical inaccuracy. His imaginary reality streak also caused him problems when the 2015 blockbuster was released. Bajirao Mastani. At that time, opposition came from descendants of the Peshwas of Maharashtra who claimed that Rau, the book on which Bhansali based his screenplay, is itself questionable as to its accuracy.
Likewise, now Bhansali has argued that Padmavati is actually based on the poem by Malik Muhammad Jayasi Padmavat. This is why the Central Board of Film Certification suggested that he change the title to Padmavat in order to avoid any reference to history.
This star by Prithviraj Kapoor was one of the earliest known historical figures produced by India. In 1941, its release coincided with the boom in the Quit India movement. While the film was licensed by the Bombay Censor Board, its release was withdrawn in some of the areas that served the British Indian Army. This a drastic decision has been taken to prevent Indians serving the British Army from being influenced by the nationalist theme of the film.
All images are screenshots via YouTube.