Padmavaat, Padman clash averted

Last Updated 19 January 2018, 15:52 IST

In a rare gesture in Bollywood, actor Akshay Kumar agreed to shift the release of his social-cause film, Pad Man, whose release date clashed with Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Padmavaat.

Padmaavat would be released as per schedule on 25 January, on the eve of Republic Day, Pad Man would now be released on 9 Febuary.

Akshay and Bhansali jointly  announced this at a hurriedly-convened media interaction on Friday evening.

"While I was doing my rehersal for an event, Sanjay Leela Bhansali was also there, he requested me if we could move our film ahead...I agreed," Akshay said.

"We requested him to move the release date of his film and he agreed. We will be grateful to him for a lifetime," said Bhansali.

Both of them hugged each other and posed for photographs - in what is being seen as a major development in recent times.

"The industry is proud of him (Akshay)....  I would be indebted to him for lifetime. As a fraternity we are proud," Bhansali said.

"He has gone through a lot. It is essential for them to release the film at this time, their stakes are higher than mine...his need is much more," Akshay said about Bhansali.

Padmaavat, earlier named as Padmavati, has seen a series of controversies including protests by fringe groups and Right-wing organisations, violent threats to actors and makers, modifications and name change by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).

Several states banned the movie, however, the Supreme Court overturned the ban.

Producers of the film, Viacom18, had moved the Apex Court challenging the ban imposed by the state governments of Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan and Gujarat.

The film had to miss its scheduled release of 1 December because of the protests.

Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor play the lead roles in the high-budget film. Deepika plays the title role of Rani Padmavati, the Rajput queen and consort of Ratan Singh while Ranveer Singh will be seen as Alauddin Khilji, the Delhi sultan.

Pad Man is biographical film written and directed by R. Balki, featuring Akshay Kumar, Sonam Kapoor and Radhika Apte in lead roles and cameo appearance by Amitabh Bachchan, which is inspired from the life of Arunachalam Muruganantham, a social activist from Tamil Nadu.

The film is based on "The Sanitary Man of Sacred Land", a short story from Twinkle Khanna's book, The Legend of Lakshmi Prasad, which is inspired from the life of Arunachalam Muruganantham, a Tamil Nadu-based social activist who revolutionized the concept of menstrual hygiene in rural India by creating a low-cost sanitary napkin machine.

(Published 19 January 2018, 14:28 IST)

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