The team of Padmavati has been enduring creative hardships ever since the project was first announced. From troublemakers vandalising the sets to receiving multiple threats opposing the making and the release of the film — they have seen it all. To the extent that director Sanjay Leela Bhansali was subjected to physical assault and verbal abuse during the making of his magnum opus.
And so, the Indian Film Television Association (IFTDA) decided to speak up against it.
The IFTDA, along with the members and heads of Cine Artists Association (CINTAA), Western India Cinematographers Association (WICA), Screenwriters Association (SWA) and Association of Cine and Televisions Art Directors Costume Designers held a meeting recently and professed their unity against the uncivil behaviour of political parties.
IFTDA president Ashoke Pandit feels hurt that filmmakers are subjected to such treatment. “We are creative people and we don’t deserve this kind of treatment. Every now and then we see our makers being heckled. We work hard when making films. Bhansali is a symbol and attack on him is like abusing the film fraternity,” he said.
He further added that he doesn’t understand how the audience can make a perception even before watching the film. “How can people assume the story without even watching the film!” he asks. “One cannot threaten merely on assumption basis.”
Actor Sushant Singh, general secretary of CINTAA, suggests that the government should step in at this point.
Expressing his frustration, he asked, “Till when will our fraternity members keep asking for freedom of expression to make films? Why do we need to fight for such a basic right all the time?”
He added, “My question is for the state and central government- why you are silent? People from your parties are openly giving threats, abusing our families, and threatening to burn theatres. I have the right to ask for an assurance from the government.”