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 Updated: Madras Cafe...

Indian movie proves controversial as it speculates about the assassination of the Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi


Link Here 23rd August 2013  full story: Madras Cafe...India film banned in Tamil Nadu and the UK
madras cafeMadras Cafe is a 2013 Indian action drama by Shoojit Sircar.
With John Abraham, Nargis Fakhri and Rashi Khanna.

The film is proving controversial in India as it is based on the Sri Lankan civil war where emotions are still running high.

Director Shoojit Sircar has conceded that his movie may have certain scenes resembling events related to Rajiv Gandhi's assassination, but he clarifies that the film's story is not a biopic on the former prime minister. Sircar said:

This is not a biopic on him, this is not a story based on him. Yes, you can say that there is a similarity to that incident. There is a similarity in the facial structure (of the actor who plays the said role).

Rajiv Gandhi died when an LTTE suicide bomber detonated a bomb at an election rally in May 1991. A similar incident has been showcased in the film's trailer. However, the director explained:

We have taken that incident which we read in the paper. Rest, whatever is around it, has been fictionalised in the scripting. But somewhere you may find some historical references in the fictionalised bit too.

Madras Cafe is already facing the ire of Tamil activist groups Naam Tamizhar and MDMK. The members have sought a ban on the film contending that it portrays LTTE cadres as terrorists.

Update: Not banned by Madras court

22nd August 2013. See  article from  timesofindia.indiatimes.com

The Madras high court has cleared the way for the release of the Bollywood movie Madras Cafe refusing to entertain a petition seeking its ban.

The judges in their order also said that the filmmakers have the liberty to release the dubbed version of the film as soon as it gets the clearance from the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).

However the court case against the film will still go ahead with the next hearing on 3rd September.

Update: But banned in Tamil Nadu

23rd August  2013. See  article from  dailymirror.lk

Madras Cafe is seemingly banned in Tamil Nadu for showing the LTTE group in bad light. The spy thriller would not be screened in the state, reported a spokesperson of the Tamil Nadu Film Exhibitors Association.

The decision has been unanimously taken by the several pro-Tamil groups and political parties, including BJP. The pro-Tamil group demanded delete of some objectionable scenes but the leading actor of the film John refused to do so. He claimed that if censor board has not objection in any scene of the film then why should he delete those scenes.

 

 Updated: Madras Cafe...

Indian movie loosely based on the Sri Lankan civil war is banned by British cinemas


Link Here 29th August 2013  full story: Madras Cafe...India film banned in Tamil Nadu and the UK
madras cafeMadras Cafe is a 2013 Indian action drama by Shoojit Sircar.
With John Abraham, Nargis Fakhri and Rashi Khanna. YouTube icon BBFC link IMDb

The film is proving controversial in India as it is based on the Sri Lankan civil war where emotions are still running high.  Director Shoojit Sircar has conceded that his movie may have certain scenes resembling events related to Rajiv Gandhi's assassination, but he clarifies that the film's story is not a biopic on the former prime minister. Sircar said:

This is not a biopic on him, this is not a story based on him. Yes, you can say that there is a similarity to that incident. There is a similarity in the facial structure (of the actor who plays the said role).

Rajiv Gandhi died when an LTTE suicide bomber detonated a bomb at an election rally in May 1991. A similar incident has been showcased in the film's trailer. However, the director explained:

We have taken that incident which we read in the paper. Rest, whatever is around it, has been fictionalised in the scripting. But somewhere you may find some historical references in the fictionalised bit too.

Madras Cafe is already facing the ire of Tamil activist groups Naam Tamizhar and MDMK. The members have sought a ban on the film contending that it portrays LTTE cadres as terrorists.

Banned in Tamil Nadu

The film was passed by the Indian film censors but faced court actions calling for a ban in Madras and Tamil Nadu. The court actions failed, but cinema owners took the hint in Tamil Nadu and decided not to exhibit the movie.

Banned in Britain

uk cinemas logoNow the film has been similarly banned by British cinemas. UK cinema chains, Cineworld, Odeon and Vue, have banned the film saying in a statement:

Our policy is to show a wide range of films for different audiences ...HOWEVER... following customer feedback and working with the film distributors, we have decided to not show Madras Cafe. We apologise for any inconvenience.

Press reports suggested that some Tamils had complained that the film was anti-Tamil. The Facebook page of the Tamil Youth Organisation UK has been full of agitation against the film.

The BBFC passed the film 15 uncut for strong violence and injury detail. The BBFC InSight alluded to the emotional impact of the film:

This is a sombre drama and the violence is depicted realistically, with a strong emotional impact. In the opening scene people are forced off a bus and made to kneel in a field as they are massacred. Blood spurts are seen as several of them are shot in the back, and in a more distant image a little girl is shot too as she tries to run away. Several executions are shown, including a man tied to a post, his body juddering under fire with lots of blood as he is killed.

 

 Updated: Madras Cafe...

background about the reasons behind UK cinemas banning an Indian film


Link Here 12th September 2013  full story: Madras Cafe...India film banned in Tamil Nadu and the UK
uk cinemas logoMadras Cafe is a 2013 Indian action drama by Shoojit Sircar.
With John Abraham, Nargis Fakhri and Rashi Khanna. YouTube icon BBFC link IMDb

The film proved controversial in India as it is based on the Sri Lankan civil war where emotions are still running high. Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi died when an LTTE suicide bomber detonated a bomb at an election rally in May 1991. A similar incident has been showcased in the film's trailer. However, the director explained that the film is only partially based on fact:

We have taken that incident which we read in the paper. Rest, whatever is around it, has been fictionalised in the scripting. But somewhere you may find some historical references in the fictionalised bit too.

Madras Cafe invoked the ire of Tamil activist groups Naam Tamizhar and MDMK. The members have sought a ban on the film contending that it portrays LTTE cadres as terrorists. Several court cases later, the film was released across India, however cinemas in the state of Tamil Nadu refused to show the film.

Three major cinema companies in the U.K. decided not to screen Madras Cafe . The film was to have opened in the U.K. on August 28, 2013 in theatres owned by Cineworld, Odeon and Vue.

But on August 24, protests began outside the head office of these theatres, organised by Sri Lankan Tamil groups led by the Tamil Youth Organisation (U.K.). Carrying placards that said, Inciting violence is not entertainment, Ban Madras Cafe , Ban hate speech , its members shouted slogans and burnt copies of the film's posters. The protests somehow managed to elude press coverage, despite the dramatic theatricals of posters being burned.

The anti-Madras Cafe campaign went on the Facebook page of the Tamil Youth Organisation. An online campaign called on Tamils to sign a petition against the film, and to telephone theatres to protest the screenings.

When the cinemas complied with this demand, exultant messages appeared on the page. The theatres played down the ban though, perhaps suggesting that they had little desire to oppose the censorship, and certainly didn't want to take it any further.

A senior executive from Odeon, in response to a question from The Hindu, merely said her company does not wish to cause any offence to any local community groups and hence took the decision. A Cineworld spokesperson was equally guarded. Our policy is to show a wide range of films to different audiences. However, following customer feedback and after working with the film distributors, we have decided not to show Madras Cafe.

The issue then sank from public gaze, but a few voices have registered  disquiet. It is hard to believe that we are living in a first world country, said a senior media industry executive who did not want to be named: A group of people created a ruckus in front of Cineworld's offices, and the film is withdrawn! And neither does the U.K. government nor the Indian High Commission intervene.

Conversations with South Asian activists suggest that they did not want to get involved because they do not wish to mess with the pro-LTTE Tamil groups, which are well organised and militant.