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No Padmavati on December 1, Makers 'Voluntarily' Defer Release After Raging Protests

In a statement, Viacom18 said it has voluntarily decided to defer the film’s December 1 release, adding that the revised date would be announced in due course.


Updated:November 19, 2017, 6:47 PM IST
No Padmavati on December 1, Makers 'Voluntarily' Defer Release After Raging Protests
(Network18 Creatives)

New Delhi: The release of Deepika Padukone-starrer Padmavati has been deferred, Viacom18 announced on Sunday, a day after Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje urged the Centre to ensure that the controversial movie is not released without “necessary” changes.

In a statement, Viacom18 said it has “voluntarily” decided to defer the film’s December 1 release, adding that the revised date would be announced in “due course”.

Padmavati has been facing protests by several Rajput groups, including the Karni Sena and others, for allegedly “distorting” historical facts. The controversy took an ugly turn earlier this week when Karni Sena leaders threatened to cut off Deepika Padukone’s nose.

The movie features Deepika Padukone as legendary Rajput queen Rani Padmavati, Shahid Kapoor as her husband Rawal Ratan Singh and Ranveer Singh as Delhi Sultanate ruler Alauddin Khilji.

The statement by Viacom18 read as follows:

'Viacom18 Motion Pictures, the studio behind Padmavati' has voluntarily deferred the release date of the film from December 1st 2017. Along with Sanjay Leela Bhansali, amongst the most gifted film makers of his generation, Viacom18 Motion Pictures has created a beautiful cinematic masterpiece in 'Padmavati' that captures Rajput valor, dignity and tradition in all its glory. The film is an eloquent portrayal of a tale that will fill every Indian with pride and showcase our country's story-telling prowess across the globe. We are a responsible, law-abiding corporate citizen and have the highest respect and regard for the law of the land and all our institutions and statutory bodies including the Central Board of Film Certification. We always have and are committed to continue following the established procedure and convention. We have faith that we will soon obtain the requisite clearances to release the film. We will announce the revised release date of the film in due course. We stand firm in our commitment to tell endearing tales that resonate with our audiences the world over as we have in the past with our other projects such as 'Toilet: Ek Prem Katha', 'Queen', 'Bhaag Milkha Bhaag' and many more.'

The decision comes a day after Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje wrote to Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Irani, saying suggesting that a committee of historians, film experts and members from the Rajput community be formed to look into the film's subject and necessary changes be made to it so that it does not hurt the sentiments of any community.

Raje also said that the Censor Board should consider all possible results before certifying the film, a day after the Board sent the film back to its makers because the application for the certification was "incomplete".

The letter was the first official communication from the Rajasthan chief minister on the controversy surrounding the epic drama.

Rajput groups, including the Karni Sena, have claimed that the movie shows invader Alauddin Khilji romancing the Rajput queen of Chittorgarh. But the claim has been trashed by director Bhansali, and journalists privy to a private screening have already reported that there is not a single scene of the two together.

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