Vishwaroopam is a Tamil spy thriller film written, directed and co-produced by Kamal Haasan, who also plays the lead role. The film made headlines when it was banned after Muslim groups protested saying it portrayed the religion in bad light.
The ban on Kamal Hassan's magnum opus Vishwaroopam in Tamil Nadu evokes two emotions: sadness and anxiety. Sadness, for a gifted and hardworking film-maker such as Kamal Hassan for landing himself in such a mess, and anxiety, for the fall in the threshold of intolerance to artistic expression in a state that has been different from the rest of the country. We haven't seen the movie yet, and hence cannot comment on the way Kamal Hassan has depicted Muslims or symbols of Islam. However, several Muslim organisations in the state, notably the Tamil Nadu Muslim Munnetra Kazhagam (TMMK), which have seen the movie, say that it targets Muslims and their beliefs. Even with some scenes deleted, Vishwaroopam will affect the social-harmony and peace in the state, M H Jawahirullah, MLA and TMMK leader has reportedly said. Supporters of the TMMK and other organisations have also staged a protest against Vishwaroopam in front of Kamal Hassan's office, where they burned the posters of the movie and shoe-slapped his images. This has certainly landed the actor-director in big trouble, perhaps the biggest in his career of more than five decades. He has reportedly sunk about Rs 95 crore on the movie in the hope to get into the rare 100-crore box office club.
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